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Presented to the 


by the 




Che ©totp of tfte iRations 


TO A.D. 14 


Rome. By Arthur Gilman, M.A. 
The Jews. By Prof. J. K. Hosmer. 
Germany. By Rev. S. Baring- 

Gould, M.A. 
Carthage. By Prof. Alfred J. 

Alexander's Empire. By Prof. 

J. P. Mahakfy. 
The Moors in Spain. By Stanley 


By Prof. George 

Prof. Arminius 
By Arthur Gil- 
the Hon. EMILY 

Ancient Egypt. 


Hungary. By 

The Saracens. 

MAN, M.A. 

Ireland. By 

Chaldea. By ZenaIde A. Ragozin. 
The Goths. By Henry Bradley. 
Assyria. By ZenaIde A. Ragozin. 
Turkey. By Stanley Lane-Poole. 
Holland. By Prof. J. E. THOROLD 

Mediaeval France. By Gustave 

Persia. By S. G. W. Benjamin. 
Phoenicia. By Prof. G. Rawlinson. 
Media. By ZenaIde A. Ragozin. 
The Hansa Towns. By Helen 


Early Britain. By Prof. ALFRED 

J. Church. 
The Barbary Corsairs. By STANLEY 

Russia. By W. R. Morfill, M.A. 
The Jews under the Romans. By 

W. D. Morrison. 

Switzerland. By Mrs. Lina Hug 

and R. Stead. 
Mexico. Bv Susan Hale. 
Portugal. By H. Morse Stephens. 
The Normans. By Sarah Orme 

The Byzantine Empire. By C. W. 

C. Oman. 
Sicily : Phoenician, Greek and 

Roman. By the late Prof. E. A. 

The Tuscan Republics. By Bella 

Poland. By W. R. MORFILL, M.A. 
Parthia. By Prof. George Raw- 


35. The Australian Commonwealth. By 

Greville Tregarthen. 

36. Spain. By H. E. Watts. 

37. Japan. By David Murray, Ph.D. 

38. South Africa. By George M. 


39. Venice. By Alethea Wiel. 

40. The Crusades. By T. A. Archer 

and C. L. KiNGSFORD. 

41. Vedic India. By Z. A. Ragozin. 

42. The West Indies and the Spanish 

Main. By James Rodway. 

43. Bohemia. By C. Edmund Maurice. 

44. The Balkans. By W. Miller, 


45. Canada. By Sir J. G. Bourinot, 


46. British India. By R. W. Frazer, 


47. Modern France. By Andre Le 


48. The Franks. By Lewis Ser- 


49. Austria. By Sidney Whitman. 

50. Modern England, Before the Re- 

form Bill. By Justin McCarthy. 

51. China. By Prof. R. K. DOUGLAS. 

52. Modern England. From the Reform 

Bill to the Present Time. By 
Justin McCarthy. 

53. Modern Spain. By Martin A. S. 


54. Modern Italy. By Pietro Orsi. 

55. Norway. By H. H. Boyesen. 

56. Wales. By O. M. Edwards. 

57. Mediaeval Rome. By W. Miller, 


58. The Papal Monarchy. By William 

Barry, D.D. 

59. Mediaeval India under Mohamme- 

dan Rule. By Stanley Lane- 

60. Buddhist India. By Prof. T. W. 


61. Parliamentary England. By Ed- 

ward Jenks, M.A. 

62. Mediaeval England. By Mary 


63. The Coming of Parliament. By L. 

Cecil Jane. 

64. The Story of Greece. From the 

earliest times to A.D. 14. By 
E. S. Shuckburgh. 

65. The Story of the Roman Empire. 

(B.C. 29 to a.d. 476.) By H. 
Stuart Jones. 


Adelphi Terrace. 
















First Edition IQ05 

Second Impression . . . ign 

Copyright by T. Fisher Unwin, 1905 
(For Great Britain). 

Copyright by G. P. Putnam's Soxs. 1905 
(For the United States of America). 


The " Stones of the Nations " could not be complete 
without that of Greece. This is one excuse for adding 
to the number of short Greek Histories. Another is 
that it was a necessary preface to a second volume 
designed to sketch the fortunes of Greece after its 
period of greatness, the interest of which could 
hardly be intelligible without some account of the 
life and genius of its people when at their best. I 
have tried throughout to lay stress upon the political, 
intellectual, and artistic achievements of the Greeks, 
rather than on the history of military operations. 
The latter of course could not be ignored or 
neglected, but they have not been made the chief 
feature in the book. My plan was to notice the 
literary movement in each period as it arose ; it 
was thought better however that a chapter con- 
taining a more continuous account of extant Greek 
literature should be added. It therefore necessarily 
contains some repetition of what had been said in 
previous chapters. The amount however of such 

VI 11 


repetition is not very serious, and may perhaps be 
compensated by the convenience to students of 
having the information together. For the specimens 
of the various poets which are there given the writer 
is, except in one instance, himself responsible. 

June^ 1905. 



The Greeks and their Work in the World . i 

The meaning of Hellas — The Athenian supremacy from B.C. 
478 to B.C. 404, followed by the Spartan and Theban 
supremacies B.C. 404-362 — The Macedonian (B.C. 338-197) 
and Roman (B.C. 197 to the end) supremacies increase the 
separation of states — The predecessors of the Hellenes : ( 1 ) 
The Cretan kingdom; (2) the Pelasgians ; (3) The Acheeans 
or Mycenseans — Homer and the Achaeans — Development of 
Greek religion — Political science — Literature : (1) Homer 
and the cyclic poets ; (2) The lyric, iambic, and elegiac 
poets ; (3) Prose literature — The drama — Greek art. 



Early Development of Greek States 


The Hellenes — iFolians, Ionians, and Dorians — Greek 
colonisation — The Oracles and great games — First Olympiad, 
B.C. 776 — Objections raised to the games — The Amphicity- 
onic League — The Peloponnesus from B.C. 776 — The tyrants 
of Corinth, Sicyon, and Argos — Sparta — Lycurgus — Spartan 
education — The Spartan mode of life — First Messenian war, 
745-720 — Second Messenian war, B.C. 685-660 — Arcadia, 
Elis, Achaia — Central Greece — Athens — The Synoikismos 
of Theseus — Draco — Solon — The Seisachtheia of Solon— 
Pisistratus — The reforms of Cleisthenes — Literary movement 
at Athens — Island Greece. 





The Origin of the Persian Invasions . 80-97 

The Lydian kings and the Ionian cities — Crcesus of Lydia — 
Cyrus and the Persians — The Ionian revolt, B.C. 501-495 — 
Darius, B.C. 522-485— Results of the Scythian expedition — 
Submission of Thrace and Macedonia to the Persian king — 
The Ionian revolt following the affair of Naxos. 


The Persian Invasions . . . 98-133 

Failure of the first invasion under Mardonius, B.C. 492 — The 
Medizing States in Greece — Quarrel of Athens with yEgina, 
B.C. 491 — Second Persian invasion, B.C. 490 — Capture of 
Eretria — Battle of Marathon — Effects of the battle — The 
Athenians build a fleet, B.C. 490-480 — The coming inva- 
sion — Artemisium — Thermopylae — The Greek fleet retire to 
the bay of Salamis — Will the Greeks fight at Salamis ? — 
Disappearance of the Persian fleet — The Campaign of B.C. 
479 — Battle of Mykale — The League of Samos, Chios, and 
Lesbos — The Confederacy of Delos — Aristides — Effect of 
the Confederacy of Delos — The battles of the Eurymedon, 
B.C. 466 — Western Hellas — The continued rise of Athens. 

Athenian Supremacy (b.c. 466 — b.c. 431) . 134-167 

The success of Athens — The war between Sparta and the 
Messenian helots, B.C. 464-454 — The policy of Pericles — The 
continental empire of Athens — The Five Years' Truce with 
Sparta, and the peace of Callias with Persia, B.C. 450-449 — 
Fall of Athenian land supremacy — Bceotia separates from 
the Athenian alliance — Eubcea and Megara revolt, B.C. 446 
—The Thirty Years' Peace, B.C. 445— Athens and the 
members of the Delian Confederacy — The adornment of 
Athens under Pericles — Athens becoming the home of 
literature and the drama— Opposition to Pericles and the 
new culture— Discontent in the confederacy — The affair of 
Corcyra and the beginning of the Peloponnesian war — Revolt 



of Potidrea — The Athenians denounced at Sparta — The 
Peloponnesian war — General outline — First period, B.C. 
431-424— Second period, B.C. 421-415 — Third and final 
period, B.C. 4 1 5-404. 


The Peloponnesian War to the Establishment 

of Macedonian Supremacy . . 168-225 

The beginning of the Peloponnesian wars, B.C. 431 — Revolt 
of Lesbos — Disorders in Corcyra and Athenian interference 
in Sicily — Demosthenes in /Etolia — Capture of Pylus, B.C. 
425 — Battle of Delium, B.C. 424 — The campaign of Brasidas 
in the North and the gradual failure of Athens— The truce of 
B.C. 423 — The Peace of Nicias, B.C. 421 — Greek politics 
from B.C. 421 to B.C. 45 — Fresh provocations to Sparta — 
The Sicilian Expedition, B.C. 415 — Alleged profanation of 
the mysteries — Mutilation of the Herman — The difficulties of 
the expedition — Siege of Syracuse begun B.C. 414 — The 
Spartans intervene — Failure of the re-inforced Athenian army 
and navy — Final defeat of the Athenians and death of Nicias 
and Demosthenes— Effect on the prestige and authority 
of Athens — The Athenians resist the dissolution of their 
confederacy — The operations of the restored Alcibiades — 
Cyrus and Lysander — The battle of Notium, B.C. 407 — 
Battle of Arginusce, B.C. 406, and of /Egospotami, B.C. 405 
— The occupation of Athens and the destruction of her 
fortifications and constitution — The Thirty — Thrasybulus 
restores the democracy, B.C. 405-4 — -The Sophists in Athens 
— Condemnation and death of Socrates, B.C. 399 — Sparta 
supreme in Greece, B.C. 403-371 — Sparta's efforts to free 
Asiatic Greeks after the death of Cyrus — Leagues against 
Sparta, B.C. 396-390— Peace of Antalcidas, B.C. 387 — Dis- 
credit of the Spartans — New Athenian confederacy, B.C. 
378-355 — Battle of Leuctra, and beginning of Theban 
hegemony, B.C. 371 — Rise of the Macedonian kingdom — 
Reign of Philip II. from B.C. 359 to the peace of Philocrates, 
B.C. 346— Active encroachments of Philip II. — Opposition 
to Philip organised by Demosthenes, but ended by the battle 
of Cheeroneia, B.C. 338— Macedonian supremacy secured. 




The Greater Hellenism . . . 226-267 

Death of King Philip II. — Accession of Alexander the 
Great, B.C. 336 — Effect of Alexander's Eastern campaigns — 
Battle of the Granicus and the settlement of Asia Minor — 
Syria and Egypt B.C. 334-3 — In Central Asia, B.C. 331-323 
— Effect of the death of Alexander, B.C. 323 — Formation 
of independent kingdoms — Consequences to the Greeks — 
Spartan resistance to Alexander, B.C. 333 — The Lamian war 
and subjection of Greece, B.C. 323-2 — The new settlement 
of Greece — Athens under the successors of Alexander — 
Determination in Greece — The Celtic invasion, B.C. 280-279 
— The Greeks in Italy — The Greeks in Sicily — Timoleon in 
Sicily — Agathocles of Syracuse, B.C. 317-289 — Pyrrhus in 
Sicily, B.C. 278 — The Romans in Sicily, B.C. 262-242 — The 
whole of Sicily a Roman province, B.C. 212 — Literature in 


The Roman Conquest .... 268-312- 

Gradual formation of kingdoms after the death of Alexander 
— Five kings, B.C. 306 — Four kingdoms, B.C. 301 — Three 
kingdoms — Macedonia, Syria and Egypt, B.C. 281 — The 
three kingdoms from B.C. 280 to B.C. 220 — Greece and the 
Macedonians — The ^Etolian League — The Achoean League 
— The Kings of Macedonia and the Achaean League — War 
between Sparta and the Achaean League — The " Cleomenic 
War," B.C. 224-222 — Philip V. of Macedonia, B.C. 220-179 
— A state of general warfare, B.C. 220-217 — The position of 
Athens — Ascendency of Philip V. — He joins Hannibal 
against Rome — The disturbed state of Greece in B.C. 211 to 
B.C. 200 — Philip : s agreement with Antiochus to partition the 
outlying dominions of Egypt, B.C. 205-200 — Combination in 
Greece against Philip, B.C. 200 — The Romans intervene — 
Roman troops in Epirus — T. Quinctius Flamininus in Greece, 
B.C. 198 — Effects of the Battle of Cynoscephalae, B.C. 197 — 
The Roman settlement of Greece — Disturbing elements in. 
Greece — The /Etolians invite the interference of Antiochus — 
Antiochus comes to Greece — Antiochus is disappointed as to 
support in Greece — yEtolian war, B.C. 191-189 — Battle of 
Magnesia, B.C. 190 — Settlement of Asia after the defeat of 



Antiochus, B.C. 189 — The kingdom of Pergamus — Subjection 
of yEtolia, B.C. 187 — The Achoean League and Rome — 
General unrest in Greece — The accession and policy of 
Perseus, B.C. 179-168 — General movement in Greece against 
Rome, B.C. 1 71-170 — Severe treatment of Greek states by 
the Romans — Dissolution of the Achaean League, B.C. 146-5 
— Decadence of Greece under the Romans. 


Greece under the Rule of Rome to a.d. 14 . 313-347 

Peaceful state of Greece after B.C. 146 — Decay and poverty — 
Piracy in Greek waters — The kingdom of Pergamus becomes 
the Roman province of Asia, B.C. 131 — The prosperity of 
the Asiatic Greeks in spite of extortionate Roman magistrates 
— The disadvantages of the Roman rule — The merits of the 
Roman rule — Mithradates Eupator — Many Greeks join 
Mithradates, B.C. 88 — European Greece joins the movement 
against Rome, and Athens accepts the authority of Mithra- 
dates — Campaign of Sulla in Attica and the capture of 
Athens, B.C. 87-6 — Sulla's campaign in Boeotia, B.C. 86 — 
Greek cities in Asia return to their allegiance to Rome — The 
sufferings of the Greeks in Asia — Reforms of Lucullus in the 
Greek cities of Asia — Pompey's suppression of pirates and 
settlement of Asia — The Greeks during the civil wars of B.C. 
49 to 32 — -Julius Coesar's management of Greece — Athens 
adheres to M. Brutus, and afterwards to M. Antonius — The 
Greeks in Sicily — Augustus and Greece — The Greek dynas^y 
in Egypt comes to an end, B.C. 30 — The second arrangement 
of Greece by Augustus, B.C. 21-19 — Improved position cf 
the provinces under the Emperor. 


The Intellectual Life of Greece . . 348-403 

Greek education — Grammar, music, and gymnastics — The 
Sophists — The philosophical schools — Literature — Epic, 
lyric and dramatic poetry — Alexandrine poets, epic and 
bucolic — History — Oratory. 

Index ...... 405 



. Frontispiece 




From a vase painted by Athenodotus. 







Ftom the Cella Frieze of the Parthenon. (Acropolis Museum.) 




T 3 






From a mosaic in the British Museum, 

From a vase painting. 




From a terra-cotta in the British Museum. 

ATHLETE USING THE STRIGIL (AiroBvofievog) . -47 

From the statue in the Vatican Museum. 

COIN OF ,EGINA . . . . -5° 

THE THESEION (DORIC) . . . • 59 

THE AREOPAGUS . . . . -63 




PROPYL^A . . . . -77 



From the monument of Dexileos of Athens, who fell in war with the 
Corinthians, B.C. 394. 

THEMISTOCLES, C. B.C. 5 1 4-449 . . . I09 

{Vatican Museum.) 

temple of victory at athens. (fifth century 

ionic) . . . . . .127 

pericles, ob. b.c. 429 .... 137 

{British Mtiseum.) 
THE PARTHENON ... . . . 147 


(Biitish Museum.) 


(CORINTHIAN) . . . . 1 55 




(Capitoline Museum. ) 

ALCIBIADES, C. B.C. 450-404 . 
(UjJ'izi Gallery, Florence.) 


(Laterau Museum.) 

SOCRATES, B.C. 469-399 

(Vatican Museum.) 

DEMOSTHENES, B.C. 384-322 . 
{Vatican Museum.) 


AMPHORA ..... 


(British Museum.) 









CONSULTING . . , . . . 24 I 

(British Museum.) 


(Vatican Museum.) 


GAMUS, ABOUT B.C. 230 .... 249 

(Capitoline Museum.) 


(British Museum.) 

EPICURUS, B.C. 342-270 . . . -257 








COIN OF LYSIMACHUS, OB. B.C. 28 1 . . . 27 1 


AKROKORINTHOS . . . . 279 







ATHENS . . . . . . . 345 

PLATO, B.C. 427-347 • • • • -355 

From the Hertnat, Berlin. 

ARISTOTLE, B.C. 384-322 . ■. . . . 359 
(Spada Palace.) 

AESCHYLUS, B.C. 525-426 , . , 375 
(Capitoline Museum.) 

SOPHOCLES, B.C. 495-4C5 .... 383 
(Lateran Museum.) 

EURIPIDES, B.C. 480-406 .... 387 


ARISTOPHANES, C. B.C. 444-380 
(Uffizi Gallery, Florence.) 

MENANDER, B.C. 342-29I 

(Vatican Museum.) 





Greece and the coasts of the jECean Facing page I 


the greek colonies. . . Facing page 226 


From a vase painted by Athenodolus. 



The meaning of Hellas — The Athenian supremacy from B.C. 478 to 
B.C. 404, followed by the Spartan and Thebari supremacies B.C. 
404 362— The Macedonian (B.C. 3387197) and Roman (B.C. 197 
to the end) supremacies increase the separation of states — The 
predecessors of the Hellenes: (1) The Cretan kingdom; (2) the 
Pelasgians ; (3) the Achaeans or Mycenseans — Homer and the 
Achaeans — Development of Greek religion — Political science — 
Literature: (i) Homer and the cyclic poets; (2) The lyric, 
iambic, and elegiac poets ; (3) Prose literature- -The drama — 
Greek art. 

The Greeks, who called themselves Hellenes, were 
a race rather than a nation. Though they were the 
predominant people in certain parts of Europe and 

2 1 


Asia, and though they gave their name to the land 
which still retains it, there was, in fact, no one country 
with a capital and seat of government which we can 
speak of as Hellas, as we might of France or Spain. 
The Balkan peninsula, indeed, and the islands of 
the vEgean — still called Hellas — were their principal 
home. But they had numerous settlements on the 
coast of Italy, Sicily, Thrace, and Asia Minor, and 
some in more distant parts of Europe, Asia, and 
Africa. These all came to be included under the 
general name of Hellas, and the Hellenes, wherever 
they lived, recognised ties of blood, religion, and 
common principles of conduct. 

A system of small states was a characteristic mark 
of this Hellenism. Each city, with a narrow territory 
attached, aimed at complete independence. Com- 
binations of cities to form one state, except within 
limited districts such as Laconia, Argolis, or Attica, 
were generally short-lived ; and when the inhabi- 
tants of one district forcibly subjected to their 
rule the people of another, as the Spartans did the 
Messenians, the latter were always restless and 
discon'.ented, watching every opportunity for breaking 
away. There was indeed generally one state which 
exercised a commanding influence among the others, 
and was tacitly acknowledged as holding a kind of 
supremacy. But this supremacy did not imply inter- 
ference in ordinary domestic politics. Its nature was 
undefined, and it only became conspicuous when 
combined military operations were needed. In the 
period before the Persian invasions Sparta occupied 
this position, principally because its military organi- 


sation and training gave it a natural superiority in 
war, in which it was expected to take the first place. 
It occupied a similar position again for about twenty- 
five years after the Peloponnesian war, with some- 
what higher pretensions and a wider sphere of 
influence. For about ten years Thebes held a like 
supremacy in Central Greece and a part of Pelo- 
ponnese. A similar precedency in Sicily was at times 
attributed to Syracuse, and in Magna Graecia, that is, 
in the Greek cities of Italy, to Croton or Tarentum. 

The nearest approach, however, to an Empire was 
the position held by Athens between the Persian wars 
and the end of the Peloponnesian war [B.C. 478-404]. 
The Confederacy of Delos was formed for a special 
purpose — to put down piracy and to exclude the 
Persian fleets from the yEgean, and thus secure the 
independence of the Greek states of Asia Minor. It 
was meant to be a federation of free and independent 
states, but did become in practice something like an 
Athenian Empire. Athens claimed the right of 
forcing members to remain in the League, to main- 
tain a democratic form of government, to admit in 
certain circumstances an Athenian garrison and 
"resident," and to refer certain controversies to the 
Athenian courts. But this combination never 
embraced Central Greece or Peloponnese ; it was 
almost entirely confined to islands and to towns in 
Thrace and Asia, and was finally dissolved by the 
result of the Peloponnesian war. 

The universal control afterwards exercised first by 
the Macedonian and then by the Roman Government, 
so far from promoting unity, made the separation of 


the states more complete. Both powers discouraged, 
and the latter forbade, all combinations. So that 
along with a loss of real freedom the " liberty " of each 
separate state, or rather its isolation, became still 
more pronounced. It was, in fact, the passion for 
separate existence, rendering effective or enduring 
union impossible, that greatly accounts for the ease 
with which the subjugation of the whole race was 
accomplished by those two powers. It also much 
restricted the material influence of the Greeks on the 
course of the world's history. Their great achieve- 
ment was to prevent the extension of the Persian 
power into Europe ; but they can only claim a 
very subordinate part in the forward movement of 
Alexander. Yet they possessed a genius which has 
conquered the world. Their very passion for separa- 
tism gave birth to political science : while in philo- 
sophy, in the study of nature, in art, and literature, 
in nearly everything that affects our spiritual or 
physical well-being, the Hellenes did work of 
supreme excellence. In some of these things what 
they achieved was final, and has never been surpassed. 
In others, though their conclusions have been super- 
seded by fuller knowledge and wider experience, they 
yet laid the foundation of a more enduring edifice. 
It is true that modern discoveries have shown that 
in many of the arts they had predecessors who lived 
in the same lands ; yet this ancient civilisation at 
some unknown period met with disaster and dis- 
appeared. For us it was the Hellenes who took the 
first steps on the road which has led to the successes 
of modern thought and science. 



Of the people who lived of old in the lands after- 
wards occupied by the Hellenes we have no literary 
record. The spade of the excavator is our only 
resource. Arms, ornaments, painted pottery, sculp- 
tured stone, and mason's work are thus brought to 
light which reveal something of the habits and skill 
of an ancient people and its connection with races 


living in other countries. We learn something of the 
metals which they used, of the houses or fortresses 
which they built, of their methods of disposing of the 
dead, and of what they thought of the life after death. 
As the most numerous examples of such things have 
been discovered at Mycenae and Tiryns in Argolis, it 
has been agreed to speak of this stage of civilisation 


in Greece as the Mycenaean Age. But the recent 
discoveries in Crete have pushed things still further 
back, and show that for many centuries before the 
" Mycenaeans " there were people living in Greek lands 
who had attained to great skill in building, in the 
artistic treatment of bronze, stone, and clay, as well 
as in the art of painting. These people also possessed 
a script, or written character, as well as a system of 
pictography or writing by pictures and symbols. 
Neither script nor pictography has as yet been 
interpreted, but the latter (with other indications) 
points to a connection with Egypt. But whatever 
remains to be learnt from them, enough has been 
discovered to point to a very remote antiquity for 
this civilisation, and to some great catastrophe which 
overwhelmed it. Among other things, the remains 
of the immense palace or labyrinth at Cnossus 
confirms the literary tradition that Crete was once 
the seat of a rich and powerful kingdom, and illus- 
trates the statement of Thucydides that King Minos 
was the first to construct a great fleet, with which he put 
down piracy in the yEgean Sea ; while the specimens 
of the statuary's art found there throw light upon the 
tradition of the cunning of Daedalus, who first " made 
statues walk." Nor should we forget how legend 
spoke of a tribute of boys and girls from Athens to 
Crete, from which the Athenians were only delivered 
by their hero Theseus, who slew the monstrous 

Contemporary with this Cretan civilisation — 
whether connected with it in race or not — was an 
early occupation of Greece itself by a people who 



are spoken of by various names, such as Minyae 
and Leleges, but whom Herodotus and Thucydides 
agree in describing under a general name of Pelasgoi. 
This name, however, disappears as a general appella- 
tion before the dawn of written records, and Achaioi 
and Argeioi became the general names for the 
inhabitants of Greece. How this occurred we do 
not know. It may have been simply that these 
names represent branches of the Pelasgoi which 
became so powerful that their names prevailed over 
others ; or it may be that the Achaioi were invaders 
from the North, who brought a new name to the land, 
as the Angli did to Britain. 

It is generally held that the remains of what we 
have called the Mycenaean Age belong to the period 
of these Achaeans, though some may belong to the 
earlier or Pelasgic stage, especially these buildings of 
selected and unworked stones known as Cyclopean 
walls. The men who produced this civilisation not 
only worked gold and bronze, and made vessels and 
ornaments of great beauty, but they had attained to 
a high standard of skill in representing living figures, 
both of men and animals, and built great palaces and 
fortifications. This civilisation culminated towards 
the end of the Bronze Age — that is, before iron had 
come into common use, and arms and other imple- 
ments were still made of a mixture of copper and tin. 

The first dawn of literature opens upon this 
Achaean Age. In the Iliad and Odyssey the Pelas- 
gians are no longer the dominant people. Pelasgic 
Argos now means only a district in Thessaly. The 
Leleges and Pelasgoi are among the allies, not of the 


Greeks, but of the Trojans, and come from Larisa, 
near Cyme, in Asia Minor. They are, again, only one 
of four divisions of the inhabitants of Crete, and their 
name only lingers as an epithet of Zeus in the ancient 
oracle of Dodona. But though the Greeks are no 
longer Pelasgoi, neither are they as yet Hellenes. 
To Homer the Hellenes are only a small tribe in 
Thessaly. He calls the Greeks Achaioi or Argeioi or 
Danaoi. But when Hesiod wrote Greece was Hellas, 
and the Greeks Hellenes. 

It would seem, then, that the Homeric poems were 
composed in the interval between the time when the 
Achaeans superseded the Pelasgians as the dominant 
people, and the time when the Hellenes in like 
manner superseded the Achaeans. Yet Homer was 
Hellenic in many points : in his language, which 
was understood throughout Greece, and remained 
more intelligible to a man of the age of Pericles than 
Chaucer to an Englishman of the eighteenth century ; 
in the form of government which he implies, with 
king, council, and a rudimentary assembly which 
reappear in most Greek states. The Homeric Greece, 
on the other hand, differs widely from what we know 
of it under the Hellenes. The greater divisions of 
the country seem not to have obtained the names by 
which they were known in after times. There is no 
general name for the Peloponnese, unless it be 
" Argos " in the Odyssey. Thessaly, Epirus, Acar- 
nania, Macedonia, are unknown names. Sparta 
and Athens occur, but not Lacedaemon or Attica. 
None of the Greek towns in Asia are mentioned 
except Miletus. Sicily is not known to the Iliad, 



and only as the semi-fabulous Thrinakia to the 
Odyssey. Italy has no name in either Iliad or 
Odyssey, though in the latter it may be referred to 
as a distant and unknown land in the West. Turning 
East and South we find the /Ethiopians described as 
the most distant of men. Egypt, unknown to the 
Iliad, is familiar to the Odyssey. The Phoenicians 


are mentioned in the Iliad as famous workers in 
metal ; in the Odyssey principally as pirates. The 
great empires of Central Asia are wholly unknown. 
But while Homeric thus differs from Hellenic Greece, 
it presents certain important differences also from the 
Mycenaean or Achaean Greece, especially in the use 
of iron and the form of arms and armour, and the 


mode of disposing of the dead. In Homer, dead 
bodies are burnt (though burial is also mentioned), 
the " Mycenaean " custom apparently was to bury 

The theology of Homer also seems to represent 
a period of transition. The Pelasgoi were probably 
monotheists. Their one god was Zeus. The 
Cretans from very early times claimed to show the 
place of his birth, and even of his tomb. In the 
ancient oracle of Dodona it is Zeus alone who speaks 
and not his prophetes Apollo. For the Hellenes as 
we know them not only had Olympus become 
peopled with other gods and goddesses, of whom 
Zeus was the father and chief, but their numbers had 
been increased by the addition of deities represent- 
ing celestial bodies, and good or bad qualities — the 
Sun, the Moon, the Earth, the Rivers, Youth, Love, 
Death, Wisdom, Folly, Justice, and the Avengers of 
Sin. Moreover, the ranks of the immortals were 
continually being swelled by the addition of deified 
men or Heroes, whose services to their fellow-men 
earned this reward, and were commemorated by a 
special kind of worship in some Heroon in nearly 
every part of Greece. 

In Homer this deification of men is rare, perhaps 
the only instance is Heracles. But his gods are 
brought nearer to men. Though they possess 
immortality and superhuman powers, they are 
subject to human frailties, to passion, appetite, pain, 
and pleasure, and like men are subordinated to 
overruling fate. They are eager partisans in 
human contests ; they are influenced by jealousy, 


love, and hatred ; and yet, on the whole, support the 
eternal laws of right and wrong. The goddess of 
justice is the assessor of Zeus. It is from him that 
kings rule and righteousness is maintained in the 
world. Though men sin they cannot charge God 
with their sins, which arise from their own blind 
presumption, — "to act justly is in every man's power." 
The Hellenes, then learnt from Homer, from 
Hesiod, from a body of " hymns," which, though 
probably much later, were always called Homeric, 
thus to think of the gods. They governed and 
directed the world, and therefore men sought to 
learn their will by oracles or portents, or from the 
lips of those who had received the mantic art, 
either from the gods themselves, or from the tradi- 
tions of immemorial antiquity. These gods must 
be propitiated also by prayer and sacrifice, by 
festival and song. It is possible that much of the 
ritual which thus arose was originally intended to 
avert evil rather than to express gladness or festivity. 
But though there lingered in the rites practised by 
the Hellenes many traces of this idea, yet the 
practical result was that the religious festivals 
celebrated in historical times were for the most part 
cheerful. There were indeed times of fasting and 
mourning as well as of feasting and rejoicing. 
Certain days were set apart to honour or propitiate 
the dead, as in the Anthesteria at Athens. Neverthe- 
less the prevailing feature in Greek worship was 
festivity. The cult of a particular god was con- 
nected with vintage or harvest, with athletic or 
musical contests, or with the celebration of national 



events : the foundation of cities, the union of 
peoples, the establishment of liberty, or the victory 
over enemies. Yet it may be that these cheerful 
festivals were in part but one means of escaping 
from sad thoughts. The Greek view of life and 
death was not cheerful. Life was short and its pains 
predominated over its pleasures ; the future was 
vague and uncertain. For a few exceptional heroes 
there was heaven ; for a few outrageous sinners — such 
as Tantalus and Ixion — an eternity of pain ; but for 
the ruck of mankind, if there was a future life at all, 
it was wrapt in mist and gloom. These views 
tended to lower the value set upon human life. 
Though a certain refinement of taste shrank from 
the brutalities of the arena, and gladiators were not 
butchered to make a Greek, as a Roman, holiday, 
yet the laws in most Greek states were extremely 
severe in the infliction of the death penalty, and 
wholesale executions of prisoners or rebels, of 
opponents in civil dissensions, were of frequent 
occurrence in various parts of Greece. 

Yet the Greek refinement was very real, and in 
nearly everything that concerns our thoughts and 
tastes we owe an incalculable debt to Greek thinkers 
and artists. First, the number of the states that 
made up Hellas, and the variety in their consti- 
tutions gave rise to political science. The defects 
and want of permanence in these constitutions not 
only caused frequent experiments in practice, and 
the existence of professional constitution-makers, 
but gave rise to the formation of ideal constitu- 
tions, and to speculations in the principles of justice 


and liberty, which have influenced life and thought 
ever since. The Greek polls and politeia showed a 
great advance on the Oriental monarchy, under which 
all power was in the hands of one man, and govern- 
ment was carried on by his agents. In Greece a 
tyrannis — the rule of one man not recognised by 
law — was not regarded as a form of constitution, 
but as the negation of constitutional government. 
The three forms recognised were: (i) basllela, the 
rule of a basileus or constitutional king, which 
survived in a peculiar form in Sparta till near the 
Roman period ; (2) oligarchy, in which the right to 
office was confined to certain families or classes 
among the citizens ; and (3) democracy* in which, in 
its most complete form, all offices were open to all 
citizens, and all questions were decided by their votes. 
The last was the popular ideal, though seldom com- 
pletely attained, and the philosophers did not find it 
difficult to point out its weaknesses and defects. 
They usually urged that the right form of govern- 
ment was an aristocracy — that is, when the best men 
governed. In theory, perhaps, all democrats would 
say that they held the same view ; where they 
differed was in defining the "best" men and in the 
plans for selecting them. At any rate these political 
differences and changes gave rise to political specula- 
tions, which have survived in the treatises of Xeno- 
phon, in the ideal Laws and Republic of Plato, 
and in the Politics of Aristotle — books which have 
influenced political thinkers ever since. 

In literature generally they were no less original, 
and have exercised a no less permanent influence. 


Neither writing, nor sculpture, nor painting, nor the 
art of modelling in clay began in Greek lands with 
the Hellenic world. The discoveries in the Troad, 
at Mycenae and Tiryns, and in Crete, already referred 
to, show that these arts existed many centuries before 
the dwellers in Greece were the Hellenes. But litera- 
ture begins with them. The author, or authors, of the 
Iliad and Odyssey, indeed, wrote or recited before the 
Greeks began to speak of themselves generally as 
Hellenes ; but the language of the poems was that 
which the Hellenes always used, and they do not 
appear ever to have been written in any other than 
the Ionic alphabet, which, in part at least, was derived 
from the Phoenicians. It is difficult to overestimate 
the influence of this great body of heroic legend, of 
divine tradition and moral doctrine, upon the national 
character, emphasising its unity of origin, and holding 
up a common standard of conduct and religious belief. 
The Hellenic poems and those of Hesiod, whatever 
their origin or date, continued to be regarded by the 
Hellenes as their chief source of theology and early 
history. They were followed by the poems of what 
are called the u Cyclic " poets, because they dealt 
with other parts of the " cycle " of Trojan legends, 
supplementing and extending the tale of the Iliad 
and Odyssey ; and adding to them another cycle of 
legends connected with Thebes. None of these are 
now extant, but they supplied the Greek dramatists 
with many of their plots and fables. 

The first period of Greek literature independent of 
the Homeric Epic began about the year B.C. 700, and 
was for some time wholly poetical. A number of 


poets, chiefly in Lesbos and the islands, wrote songs 
to be sung to music, and therefore called " lyrical." 
Those of Sappho were mostly on the subject of love ; 
but others, such as those of Alcaeus, were filled with 
political passion reflecting the unrest which about 
that time (between B.C. 700 and 600) fell upon the 
Greek cities in the East, where a wave of resistance 
to monarchical or oligarchic government was 
carrying all before it. Another school of poets, of 
which the chief representative was Archilochus, 
employed the Iambic metre as a vehicle for fierce 
invective and personal satire. A third class of poets 
consisted of the writers of Elegiac verse. This was 
used, like oratory in a later age, to enforce political 
or moral doctrines, as in the case of Solon of Athens 
and Theognis of Megara ; or to incite young men to 
patriotism and gallantry in war, as did Alcman and 
Tyrtaeus in Sparta. Of the lyric poets, the direct 
descendants in the next age were the writers of 
choric songs, encomia, dirges, and epinikia, or songs 
celebrating victory in the games, the most eminent 
of whom were Pindar and Baccylides (about 
B.C. 521-442). The elegiac tradition was kept up by 
Simonides of Ceos, whose epigrams on fallen patriots 
or heroes were widely popular just after the period of 
the Persian wars. It is to be observed that these 
poets came from all parts of Greece. Athens was 
not yet the natural headquarters of literature, as she 
was from about B.C. 450 to 320 ; and as, after the 
latter date, Alexandria became, where the poetical 
tradition was kept up to the fourth century of the Chris- 
tian era. Between B.C. 300 and 200 we have hymns 


from Callimachus, an astronomical poem from Aratus, 
and pastorals from Theocritus, Bion, and Moschus ; 
and in the next century an epic from Apollonius of 
Rhodes. In the first century A.D. lived Babrius, the 
fabulist ; in the next, Oppian, the writer of poems on 
fishing and hunting; and in the fifth century, Nonnus, 
the author of the huge epic called " Dionysiaca " ; 
Ouintus of Smyrna, who wrote a kind of continua- 
tion of Homer ; and Musaeus, who produced some 
pretty verse, especially the poem on Hero and 
Leander. Greek poetry, therefore, which was the 
earliest form of literature, continued with no radical 
variation for more than a thousand years. 

Prose composition was later in coming into use, 
for even some of the early philosophers, such as 
Xenophanes and Parmenides (about B.C. 530-495), 
enunciated their doctrines in verse. Prose literature 
began with the Ionic school of historians, Hecataeus 
of Miletus in the sixth century and Hellanicus in the 
fifth. Next to them came the first of the prose 
writers whose work has been preserved, Herodotus of 
Halicarnassus (B.C. 485-425), followed by Thucydides 
(B.C. 471-401) and Xenophon (B.C. 431-354), the 
Athenians. About contemporary with Herodotus 
was Hippocrates, the famous physician, whose works, 
or those reputed his, are still extant. Thus begun, 
Greek prose literature continued almost uninterrup- 
tedly till the twelfth century after Christ. In the 
second century B.C. the historical series is continued 
by Polybius of Megalopolis (B.C. 203-121), with 
many others whose works are lost ; in the last cen- 
tury B.C. by Diodorus of Sicily and Dionysius of 


I lalicarnassus, and in the first century after Christ 
by the geographer Strabo, the Jewish historians 
Josephus and Nicolas of Damascus, and the bio- 
grapher Plutarch the Boeotian. The ecclesiastical 
and the Byzantine historians keep up the tradition 
to the end. Meanwhile the varied interests of free 
states had given birth to oratory, which flourished at 
Athens in the fifth and fourth centuries B.C. We 
possess orations of ten Attic orators, the most 
famous of whom was Demosthenes (B.C. 384-322). 
With the loss of freedom oratory lost some of its 
significance, but it was taught and practised as an 
art in various parts of Hellas, especially in Rhodes 
and the Greek cities of Asia. And though we 
possess few specimens for the next five centuries — 
the orations of Dion Chrysostom in the first, and of 
the Emperor Julian in the third century A.D., being 
the most important — yet it was taken up again by 
the Christian Fathers of the fourth and fifth cen- 
turies A.D., and thus had an unbroken tradition to 
the end. It was this popular use of Greek prose 
that produced the "common dialect," formed on the 
Attic use, which prevailed over the Greek world, and 
was adopted by writers in other departments, such 
as Lucian in his dialogues ; Appian and Arrian in 
their histories, in the second century, and the romance 
writers in the fourth and fifth centuries A.D. 

The fact that Athens was the chief home of philo- 
sophy from the fourth century B.C., also determined 
the fact that Attic in some form or another was 
to be the language of philosophers. From Plato 
(B.C. 427-347) and Aristotle (B.C. 384-324) to the 


fifth century after Christ there is a chain of writers 
of philosophy or on the history of philosophy and 
philosophers. The early philosophers, who mostly 
engaged in speculations as to the physical universe, 
lived in various parts of Greece — Ionia, Magna 
Graecia, and Sicily — but in the fifth century we find 
that all teachers have a tendency to drift to Athens, 
and when about B.C. 300 and onward literature found 
a centre rather in Alexandria, Athens still main- 
tained its prestige as the home of philosophy. It 
was there that the four great schools — Academics, 
Peripatetics, Stoics, and Epicureans— through all 
their later developments had their headquarters, and 
attracted the best intellects of Greece and Rome. 

But the most characteristic literature in Greece is 
the dramatic. The exhibition of plays may have 
begun, as some think, in village festivals of harvest 
or vintage, and the story of Thespis, the first exhi- 
bitor of them in Athens, travelling round the country 
with his theatrical properties in a cart, may be true. 
But their literary shape seems certainly a develop- 
ment from the Comus, or revel-song, and especially 
from that part of it called a dithyramb, or hymn in 
honour of Bacchus. It was chiefly in use among 
Dorian peoples, and accordingly the employment of 
the Dorian dialect in the choric songs of later days 
became traditional. To this song was added a 
dialogue between the leader of the chorus and an 
" answerer " (vTraKpirng), and as the plot or fable 
became more important and intricate a second and 
third actor was added to carry on the dialogues. 
But whatever their origin these exhibitions rapidly 


spread over Greece, in which hardly any city of 
importance was without a theatre. Nowhere else did 
it form so much a part of the life of the people; and 
though the composition of plays did not last so long 
as some other forms of literature, the Greeks in this 
as in other things set an example which has never 
ceased to exercise decisive influence. In this again 
Athens took the lead. There was built the first 
permanent theatre, and there the great masters of 
tragedy were born. But of the mass of such compo- 
sitions that once existed, we have only plays of three 
tragedians and one comedian. /Eschylus (B.C. 525— 
456) represents the religious mind of Greece in the 
early fifth century, Sophocles (B.C. 495-403) the age 
of art, and Euripides (B.C. 480-406) the unrest of 
awakened curiosity and inevitable scepticism. Some 
thirty-eight names of writers of tragedies are known, 
but after the first decade of the fourth century (arc. 
B.C. 390) there seems to have been a cessation of 
original dramatic writing. The old plays were acted 
again and again, or were supplanted by music and 
recitations of poetry. Some few authors of tragedies 
lived in Alexandria in the time of the Second 
Ptolemy (B.C. 285-247), but nothing survives except 
their names. 

Along with Tragedy grew Comedy. It bore still 
stronger traces of its origin from village revels or 
festivals. Instead of dealing with human passions 
and crimes, and the mysteries of the divine order, its 
dialogue introduced every kind of ludicrous incident 
and personal satire, while the nhoric songs were 
either parodies of serious poetry, or wild extra va- 


ganzas, which spared neither gods nor men, and were 
accompanied by every licence of dance and gesture. 
The composition of such dramas began almost 
simultaneously in Sicily and Athens. In the former 
the first author is believed to be Epicharmus (about 
B.C. 480). In Athens about forty names of the Old 
Comedy are known, but all that remain to us are the 
eleven plays of Aristophanes (about B.C. 444-380). 
Towards the end of his life the poverty of the state 
made the furnishing of choruses difficult, and the 
position of politics made the old personalities dan- 
gerous. In his last plays, therefore, the choric 
element is quite insignificant, and the plays them- 
selves are comedies of manners rather than political 
invectives. This change of fashion was followed by 
a number of writers of what is called Middle Comedy, 
in which political allusions still occurred, though with 
increasing rarity. About the middle of the fourth 
century B.C. the change became more complete. The 
chorus disappeared altogether, a prologue was intro- 
duced instead, and politics disappeared entirely. 
The most conspicuous among such writers was the 
Athenian Menander (B.C. 342-291). Others came 
from Sicily and different parts of Greece, the last 
known being Posidippus of Cassandria, who was 
living in B.C. 289. The plays of this New Comedy 
are only known to us in the Latin adaptations of 
Plautus and Terence. 

Such, in brief outline, are the departments of 
literature in which Greek genius has abidingly in- 
fluenced the spirit and form of all modern literature. 
This influence is more conspicuous still in art. 

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Frescoes and other works lately discovered in Crete 
show that perhaps more than a thousand years B.C. 
considerable skill had been attained both in painting 
and sculpture ; while those found at Pompeii, which 
belong to the end of the classical period, have many 
of the excellences of a highly-developed technique. 
Hut between these two extremes there were periods 
of decadence and revival. In painting, indeed, of 
the great period, we have only that on vases and 
other pottery, which cannot be taken to fairly 
represent what could be done in delineation and the 
use of colours, though they vary from the most 
primitive ideas of drawing to the most elaborate and 
skilful compositions. In statuary, the remains of 
work before the Persian wars (B.C. 490-478) are stiff 
and conventional. The difficulties in representing 
posture, drapery, the eyes and hair, have not been 
overcome. It was after that period that the great 
artists — Pheidias, Polycleitos, Myron, and many 
others, whether independent artists or working 
under their instruction and direction — showed what 
could be done with stone or bronze. The men and 
horses on the frieze of the Parthenon live and move, 
their faces express life-like emotion, and their eyes 
see. The names of the artists mentioned belong to 
the fifth century B.C., but in the next century Scopas 
of Paros, Praxiteles of Athens, Lysippus of Sicyon, 
worthily maintained the tradition ; and if it is true 
that the Aphrodite of Melos (now in the Louvre) 
belongs to the second century B.C., Greek art re- 
mained at the very highest point of excellence at 
least till that time, while some of the statues of the 



early Emperors of Rome show scarcely less skill. In 
this, as in literature, Athens long had the supremacy, 
though never the monopoly. Nearly every important 
Greek town contributed, and especially the islands of 
/Egina, Chios, and Samos, and the wealthy city of 
Pergamus. Two motives may be regarded as the 
strongest in promoting this art — religion and athleti- 
cism. The adornment of temples and the desire to 
express the ideal of divine personages are responsible 
for a large number of the finest statues that remain, 
while almost as many came from the study of the 
nude figure as seen in the contests of the Stadium. 
The Roman conquest transferred a great quantity of 
the best works of Greek art to Italy, and in many 
cases the artists themselves migrated thither also ; 
for in Italy they would best find patrons and pur- 
chasers. This later, or Hellenistic, period of Greek 
art was, no doubt, inferior in many ways to that which 
had preceded it; but just as the later philosophy of 
Epicurus and Zeno (arc. B.C. 340-260), while owing 
much to the earlier speculations of Socrates, Plato, 
and Aristotle, exercised an even greater influence 
upon many generations, so the later Greek art — with 
the glory of the older still clinging about it — modified 
the tastes, as philosophy did the thoughts and beliefs, 
of that great part of Europe and Asia which was 
included in the Roman Empire. That influence, 
after long periods of darkness and degradation, has 
revived with full force in these later centuries. We 
can still conceive nothing greater in Art than the 
highest achievements of Greece. 

5 oq 



The Hellenes — /Eolians, Ionians, and Dorians — Greek colonisation — 
The< haclesand great games — First01ympiad,B.c.776 — Objections 
raised to the games — The Amphicityonic League — The Pelopon- 
nesus from B.C. 776 — The tyrants of Corinth, Sicyon, and Argos — 
Sparta — Lycurgus — Spartan education — The Spartan mode of life 
— hirst Messenian war, 745-720 — Second Messenian war, B. c. 
685-660— Arcadia, Elis, Achaia — Central Greece — Athens — The 
Synoikismos of Theseus — Draco — Solon — The Seisachtheia of 
Solon — Pisistratus — The reforms of Cleisthenes — Literary move- 
ment at Athens — Island Greece. 

We cannot date the arrival of the Hellenes in 
Greece, nor the composition of the Homeric poems, 
the popularity of which did so much to fix the 
language and to secure unity. We can only say 
that about B.C. 800 they were there — in European 
Greece, the Islands, and Asia Minor — and were 
beginning to send out colonies east, west, and north ; 
that the divisions of Greece had obtained the names 
which we know ; and that among these Hellenes 
there were recognised three families or divisions dis- 
tinguished by dialect, though of the same mother 
tongue, and by certain moral and political charac- 
teristics /Eolians, Ionians, and Dorians. 



Mythology accounted for this by tracing their 
descent from a common ancestor Hellen and his 
sons. The ^Eolians occupied Central and Northern 
Greece from Bceotia to Thessaly, some islands, and 
the northern part of the coast of Asia Minor. The 
Ionians made their way to the northern part of 
Peloponnese, to certain islands, to Attica, and to 
the part of Asia Minor between ^Eolis and Caria. 
The Dorians first seem to have settled in Central 
Greece (in which a small district long retained their 
name), and at some time between B.C. iooo and 800 
to have pushed southward, occupying on their way 
Megara, Corinth, and Sicyon, and eventually to have 
overrun the greater part of the Peloponnese, in which 
Argolis, Laconia, and Messenia became predomi- 
nately Dorian. This immigration, whatever its 
nature, seems not to have been a solitary move- 
ment, for we find that in the Homeric times the 
Dorians had already found their way to Crete. 
Nor was their occupation of the Peloponnese com- 
plete. Arcadia and Elis retained their ancient 
inhabitants, and so many Achaeans escaped to 
the north, or retained their position there, that the 
district on the Corinthian Gulf was called Achaia. 
Nor in the districts which they occupied did they 
destroy or remove the people which they found there. 
They reduced them to an inferior, or in some cases 
to a servile, condition instead, and thus created for 
themselves and posterity a long series of difficulties, 
but they allowed them for the most part to remain in 
their ancient homes. 

The next great movement was an outburst of 


colonisation, which seems to have begun perhaps 
as early as B.C. cSoo, but to have been at its height 
between B.C. 700 and 600. To account for this we 
must remember that continental Greece was a small 
country with an extensive seaboard. Inland, though 
there are some extensive plains, as in Thessaly, it is 
generally mountainous and without great or navi- 
gable rivers. Most of the cities, therefore, which 
became important were near the coast, and their 
inhabitants, much shut off from the interior and from 
other cities, took to the sea and became bold and 
skilful mariners, finding their way from island to 
island, and from headland to headland, noting spots 
here and there which were uninhabited or so thinly 
inhabited as to invite settlers. From remote times 
trade with the countries round the Black Sea became 
important to the Greeks. One of the earliest legends 
is that o{ the Argo penetrating as far as the Crimea 
in search of the Golden Fleece! The Iliad itself is a 
record of an expedition to the southern shore of the 
Hellespont ; and before the beginning of history the 
Thracian Chersonese, which forms its northern coast, 
had been occupied by Hellenic settlers. Above all 
things it was necessary to keep this channel free and 
open for the corn-ships, on which many of the Greek 
states depended for their food. It is not surprising, 
therefore, to find the shores of the Propontis and of 
the Black Sea studded with Greek colonies. But the 
pressure of want at home, or an adventurous dis- 
position, led the Greeks in other directions as well — 
to Egypt, Sicily, and Italy, to the islands of the 
Ionian Sea, and the coasts of Epirus. The Greek 


cities in Asia Minor were not behind those of Europe. 
Miletus in Asia and Megara in Greece were perhaps 
the most prolific of all, but most of the chief cities 
both in Europe and Asia played a part in it. 

Greek colonies had this common feature. Though 
they retained a certain union of religion and senti- 
ment with their mother cities, they each became a 
separate and independent state. The tie between 
them was, indeed, one of sentiment, and was easily 
snapped by any opposition of interest. These colonies, 
therefore, though they extended the area of Hellenism, 
did not help to knit it together. Yet surviving 
treaties, legal and religious formulas, epitaphs, and 
the like, show how many things there were which 
made for unity. 

Among them we may reckon the Oracles. The 
oldest, perhaps, was that at Dodona, connected with 
the earliest settlers of Hellenic or Pelasgic stock. 
But about the time of this wave of colonisation 
Delphi became the most important of all. Private 
persons from all parts, and deputies from all states, 
visited this place to consult the god by his priestess 
or Pythia on every kind of question, personal or 
public. Delphi became the great religious centre 
of Greece, the independence and impartiality of 
which, and the free access to its shrine, concerned all 
the Greek world. It became also the national bank- 
ing-house, in which most of the leading states had 
treasure-houses, the safety of which depended on the 
inviolability of the temple and its precincts, which 
accordingly were of the highest importance to all 
alike. Another element of union was furnished by 



From a terra-cotta i>i the British Museum. 


the four great national festivals — at Olympia in Elis, 
at Nemea in Argolis, on the Isthmus of Corinth, and 
the Pythian near Del pin'. Though they probably 
existed long before, they began about this time to be 
important. By enforcing the rule that only men of 
Hellenic birth might compete in the contests, they too 
did something for the unity of Hellas. Men from all 
states met at them, and during the Olympic festival 
at any rate a kind of Truce of God was observed in 
the quarrels and petty wars so frequently raging 
between the states. The fact of the rewards being 
merely wreaths of olive or other trees, of no intrinsic 
value, was at least on the side of a disinterested quest 
of honour ; while the general belief in the impartiality 
of the judges was not without its use in a country 
where the venality of officials was notorious. The 
pride which the states took in the success of their 
citizens, and the general admiration felt for the 
winners, tended to encourage a friendly rivalry in 
which all were at one. 

On the other hand, the exaltation of physical 
prowess above intellectual and moral qualities was 
early remarked upon as mischievous in Greece as it 
has been among ourselves. Xenophanes of Colophon 
{fl. circ. B.C., 510) complains that higher honours were 
paid to victories at Olympia than to wisdom, which 
was so much more valuable than bodily strength or 
fleetness of foot. During the next century Euripides 
wrote with greater vehemence or petulance, declaring 
that the trained athlete was unfitted for all the duties 
of citizenship, civil and military alike, and that the 
honour paid to him was one of the worst abuses 


in Greece. These very criticisms illustrate the im- 
portance attached to success in the games, and help 
us to understand the fact of a poet like Pindar 
devoting his splendid genius to celebrate these vic- 
tories — a fact that Macaulay regarded with wonder- 
ing contempt. 

A certain unity was also encouraged in Greece by 
the system of Amphictyonies. An Amphictyony 
was a league of states, generally near neighbours, 
for a special purpose — primarily for the maintenance 
of some temple as a place of common worship. Such 
a league might at times amount almost to a political 
federation, though that was not its professed purpose. 
There were several Amphictyonies in Greece; but the 
one which came nearest to being political, and ex- 
ercised the greatest influence, was that of which the 
delegates met once a year at Delphi and once at 
Thermopylae Its main object was to protect the 
temple of Delphi and prevent the cultivation of its 
sacred territory, and that in itself gave it a certain 
importance for all Greeks alike. Its members also 
(called Pylagorae) did not come from closely con- 
tiguous states, but represented the great branches 
of the Greek race, so many being sent by Dorian, 
Ionian, and yEolian states respectively. It had the 
right to summon all states belonging to it to under- 
take a sacred war against any people violating the 
territory of the temple, or breaking any of the rules 
which the league laid down as to the conduct of war 
between members of the league — not to destroy any 
league city, not to cut off its water, or refuse the 
burial of the dead. 



From the statue in the Vatican Museum, 

Tyr / xrs /.v r///-: PkLopdtotoESb 49 

About the period of the first Olympiad (B.C. 776) 
the general settlement in the Peloponnese had become 
that of later times, at any rate as regards the terri- 
tories occupied by the several nations. But in many 
of the states themselves there were for many years 
after this date a regular cycle of changes in govern- 
ment. In Dorian states, such as Argos, Corinth, 
and Sicyon, the government was first in the hands of 
a royal caste, or clan, who selected the king from their 
own number. These kings, however, were not auto- 
cratic, and the government was, in fact, a kind of 
oligarchy. But in them all alike there came a time 
when some one man, generally acting as a champion 
of the people, seized on the government and became 
a despot or tyrant. Thus in Corinth about B.C. 655 
the power of the royal clan of the Bacchiadae was 
overthrown by Cypselus, whose descendants held 
the tyranny till B.C. 580. In Sicyon about B.C. 676 
a certain Orthagoras separated his city from the 
oligarchic government of Argos, and he and his 
descendants ruled it for about a hundred years. 
In Argos for many generations a family claiming 
to be descended from the original king Temenus 
had the monopoly of power, till they, too, were over- 
thrown by Pheidon. 

Now these tyrants who held power in the 
Peloponnese, roughly between B.C. 700 and B.C. 600, 
were often men of remarkable character, who did 
much for the prosperity and power of their states. 
Corinth and Sicyon both rose to importance under 
them, in wealth as well as in naval strength. In 
Argos, especially, Pheidon did great things. He 




extended the influence of his country in the 
Peloponnese, and promoted its commercial im- 
portance by the introduction of a new coinage, for 
vvhich he first set up a mint in the island of y£gina. 
We must not be led astray by the modern meaning of 
tyrant and tyranny. A Greek tyrannus did not neces- 
sarily mean an oppressive ruler, but one who obtained 
power contrary to the laws. Still, though he did not 


• m 




always rule badly, the rule of a single man supported 
by force is certain sooner or later to offend large 
classes of citizens. Sometimes this came about 
because the man himself, or more often his son 
and successor, was corrupted by the possession of 
absolute power, and became a tyrant in the modern 
sense. Sometimes it was even because he aimed too 
high, and tried to enforce good laws more strictly 
than the people would bear. Resistance or dis- 


content made the ruler suspicions, and he defended 
himself by acts of severity. From one reason or 
another a Greek tyranny rarely lasted beyond the 
second generation. By B.C. 500 these tyrannies had 
disappeared almost entirely in Kuropean Greece, and 
the political contests which were always frequent in 
the states were between oligarchy and democracy. 

But one state in the Peloponnese went through 
none of these changes. As far as we know anything 
of the history of Sparta, its constitution had scarcely 
varied at all. And this stability is one of the reasons 
of its commanding influence. Sparta never governed 
the whole of the Peloponnese ; Elis, Arcadia, Achaia, 
Sicyon, and Corinth remained independent. It was 
only Messenia that was annexed as a conquered 
country. But the Spartans gained such a reputa- 
tion for military discipline and prowess that they 
were looked upon as the natural leaders in joint 
expeditions, and obvious referees in cases of dispute. 
Sparta set a standard in physical training, in hardi- 
hood and abstemiousness, in loyalty and devotion 
to duty, which other states admired rather than 

These characteristics were promoted by a body 
of laws and customs, of a curious and interesting 
nature, usually ascribed to Lycurgus about the era 
of the first Olympiad (B.C. 7/6). The personality 
and the very existence of Lycurgus were very early 
questioned, and it is quite possible that the in- 
stitutions ascribed to him were not the work of 
any one man, but were gradually developed. Still 
it is improbable that a character so unique should 


have been wholly an invention, and at any rate 
the constitution ascribed to him was actually in 
existence for four or five centuries. The purely 
political constitution was of the type common in 
Dorian states. There were two chief magistrates, 
or kings, a small council, ox gerousia of elders — thirty 
including the kings — and an assembly or apella, 
which could only answer aye or no to propositions 
brought before it, and decided elections, it is said, by 
shouting. A modification of this constitution peculiar 
to Sparta was the yearly election of five Ephors, or 
overseers. Their duties, it seems, were originally to 
oversee the markets and the proper administration of 
the laws. But either because their powers were not 
clearly defined, or because the kings and council 
were weakened by divisions, they eventually obtained 
practical control of the government. They could 
reprimand or punish the kings no less than other 
officers or citizens, and when a king was commanding 
a military expedition one of their number accom- 
panied him and controlled his actions or secured 
his recall. It is to them that the external policy 
of Sparta is in most cases to be ascribed, though 
the kings were nominally heads of the state, and in 
dignity and ceremonial observances always occupied 
the chief place. 

In all Greek states it is to be remembered that 
freedom and democracy mean, after all, the rule 
of the few over the many ; for in all the slaves 
were more numerous than the free. This was 
peculiarly true of Sparta. The Dorian conquerors 
had remained a class apart. The ancient inhabitants 


of the country, whatever their origin, had been either 
allowed to remain on their lands as farmers who, 
though not slaves, had yet no share in the Spartan 
citizenship, and were called perioikoi ; or they had 
been reduced to serfdom under the name of helots ', 
who were bound to the soil, of which they paid 
half the products to its lord, besides doing him 
personal service in war and elsewhere. It was only 
true Spartans of the conquering race that were citizens. 
They lived like a garrison in a conquered country, 
bound to be always ready against a rising of their 
serfs, always engaged in martial exercises or actual 
war, and regarding all other employments as either un- 
important or undignified. Trade and commerce were 
left to the unenfranchised farmers {perioikoi) or the 
helots. Only to them was the use of coined money 
allowed, and all intercourse with men of other states, 
except on the field of battle, was discouraged. There 
were no written laws, in accordance with a maxim or 
rhetra of Lycurgus ; but each question of public 
importance, whether of peace or war, or the dis- 
tribution of land, was determined nominally by the 
king and council, really by the Ephors. The chief 
danger to the governing class arose from the helots, 
especially those in Messenia, whose loss of freedom 
was more recent than that of the helots in Laconia. 
Their frequent revolts were the more formidable 
because Sparta was not loved by her neighbours. 
Argos was her jealous rival, and the highlanders 
of Arcadia were always on the watch to maintain 
their independence. Both were ready to assist 
revolting helots if it suited their interests. It was 


necessary, therefore, for the Spartans to be a nation 
of soldiers, ready for a call to arms, and convinced 
that their supreme duty was to conquer or die on 
the field. 

Spartan training, therefore, was entirely directed 
to this end. It began from childhood. If an infant 
seemed weak and unpromising at its birth it was 
exposed on Mount Taygetus to perish. If it was 
decided to rear a male child, from his seventh year 
he was removed from his mother and brought up 
with other boys under the care of public officers. 
He was trained to endure every kind of hardship, to 
live on the plainest food, to dress in a single garment, 
to sleep on a mat of rushes, to walk barefooted, to 
bear the severest punishment without flinching, and 
to submit to his elders and officers with unquestion- 
ing obedience. At twenty the youths began regular 
military service, and were called eirenes, but had no 
part in civil business till thirty, and meanwhile were 
under a discipline as severe as that of their boyhood. 
Every citizen was bound to marry, but was allowed 
neither free choice nor unrestricted intercourse with 
his wife. The women were trained with almost equal 
severity, engaged in athletic exercises with the youths, 
and were taught to regard sons and husbands as 
belonging to the State rather than to themselves. 
Their death on the field was not to be lamented, but 
rather their survival of defeat. 

Simplicity of life was promoted by all taking meals 
in common. These sussitia had nothing to tempt 
the appetite or to debilitate the frame, but were 
supplied with the plainest and homeliest food. All 


citizens, including the kings, were obliged to attend 
unless they had some valid excuse, such as illness or 
absence on public service, or (in the case of the 
kings) attendance on a state sacrifice. Still further 
to emphasise the fact that Spartans were born to be 
soldiers, they were excluded from commerce, and 
forbidden the use of silver or gold coins. They 
were supported by their share in the produce of 
their lands, and had no need of money. Iron 
tokens, or "cakes," served them as a medium of 
exchange at home ; if they had to go abroad on 
public service they were supplied with money raised 
from the perioikoi. Whether this system was rightly 
attributed to Lycurgus, or to any single law-giver 
or not, for a long while it attained its object to a 
remarkable degree. The Spartan soldiers had the 
highest reputation in Greece for fighting in the open 
field. They were believed to prefer death to quitting 
ground once occupied, and they certainly showed 
dogged perseverance in the face of difficulty and 

Yet they had their limitations. They did not shine 
in sieges or assaults upon fortified places. It was only 
after nearly a century of war that they subdued Mes- 
senia. In each of the two early wars (e.g. 743-660) 
the enemy defied them for years upon the two heights 
of Mount Eira and Mount Ithome, and in the rebellion 
of B.C. 464-454 they proved equally unable to capture 
Ithome, again occupied by the Messenians, for ten 
weary years. Nor were the results of their stern 
discipline in other respects wholly satisfactory. As 
always happens with close corporations, the number 


of true Spartans tended to diminish, and the lands 
fell into the hands of too few. The jealous exclusion 
of strangers made the Spartans narrow, and unfit to 
govern others or work with other states. The pro- 
hibition of the use of money was evaded in various 
ways, and Spartans abroad on state missions gained 
a bad reputation for corruption. Their slowness of 
movement and rigid adherence to local customs 
often made their alliance of little use. But con- 
tinuity of institutions was at any rate attained. 
There were none of the fluctuations between tyranny 
oligarchy, and democracy which we have seen in 
Corinth, Sicyon, and Argos. 

The three remaining districts of the Peloponnese — 
Arcadia, Elis, and Achaia — were not reduced to de- 
pendence upon Sparta, though they were decisively 
influenced by her. The question which principally 
divided the Eleians concerned the management of 
the Olympic festival, which was claimed exclusively 
by the people of Pisa, while the rest of the Eleians 
demanded a share in it. In this demand the Eleians 
were supported by Sparta, and the dispute ended in 
the demolition of Pisa about B.C. 572, after which the 
Eleians generally acted in close alliance with Sparta. 
The cities of Arcadia, on the other hand, long con- 
tended against Spartan supremacy, and it was not 
till the conquest of Tegea in B.C. 560 that the country 
generally was compelled to follow the Spartan lead 
in matters of international importance. Achaia con- 
sisted of a league of twelve cities, each apparently 
with a more or less democratic constitution, but its 
importance belongs to a later period. At this time 


it was independent, but generally disposed to rank 
itself among the allies of Sparta. 

The two states which in the seventh century had 
attained considerable commercial importance, though 
never great political power, were the island of /Fgina, 
and Chalcis in Kuboea. But on the mainland Thebes 
and Athens were beginning to overshadow the rest. 
Of the more northern districts, Phocis was chiefly 
important as containing Delphi, and Thessaly was a 
loose confederacy of towns in which usually some 
great family held the supremacy. For certain pur- 
poses they were supposed to act together under a 
federal general, or tagus, but it seldom happened 
that such a combination proved possible. Constant 
border warfare with the Phocians tended to induce 
both to insignificance. In Bceotia, Thebes had by 
this time supplanted Orchomenus in the supremacy 
among the twelve cities which made up the Boeotian 
confederation. But this supremacy was not always 
or unanimously acknowledged, Plataea especially 
being always inclined to join the Athenian alliance. 
For certain purposes there were federal officers 
called Bceotarchs, who were supposed to preside 
over federal councils and to direct combined expe- 
ditions. But the federation was loose, and the 
Boeotians were much weakened by internal feuds, 
and never exercised much influence except for that 
short time during which the Theban supremacy was 

The most important and interesting history of all 
the Greek states is that of Athens. Attica had cer- 
tain advantages that saved it from much of the 


changes which affected other districts. Lying out 
of the direct route from Northern to Southern Greece, 
and being itself rugged and mountainous, it had not 
attracted invasion. The main stock of the people 
seems to have been Pelasgan, though there had been 
at some period so large an admixture of Ionian 
Hellenes that Athens came to be regarded as the 
mother city of the Ionians. The people prided 
themselves on their antiquity and purity of descent, 
boasting of being autochthones, or natives of the soil. 
As a symbol of this a favourite ornament of Athenian 
women was a cicada, or lizard, which was fabled to be 
born from the earth. So mythology represented the 
earliest Attic king as half snake, while Erechtheus, 
among the earliest heroes, was a babe born of Gaia, 
the earth goddess. 

There were once, it was believed, twelve inde- 
pendent cities in Attica, each with a separate 
council chamber and magistrates. These were 
combined as one state by Theseus, who was there- 
fore regarded as Oekist, or hero-founder of Athens. 
All kinds of heroic deeds and services were attributed 
to him. Among other things, he freed the state from 
the annual tribute of maidens and boys to the lord of 
Crete, killing the Minotaur to whom they were sacri- 
ficed. The tradition of this tribute contains a truth as 
to the naval supremacy of Crete in ancient times, and 
the emancipation of the Greek states from it. In the 
case of a mythological hero like Theseus — whose name 
may nevertheless represent a real person — we cannot 
pretend to give dates. But it seems certain that this 
Synoikismos, or combination of Attic towns under 



Athens, however accomplished, had taken place at 
least by B.C. 800. Another traditional change can- 
not have taken place much later. Athens had been 
ruled by kings till the death of Codrus. Tradition 
said that he devoted himself to death in obedience to 
an oracle which had announced that in a certain war 
that side would win whose king was slain, and that 
the people in gratitude would elect no king to suc- 
ceed him, though for certain religious purposes the 
title was still retained. We only know the semi- 
mythical account of this change, which is one, how- 
ever, that took place in many other states at about 
the same period, and we may accept the fact of the 
change itself. In place of the king, or bas ileus, an 
archon was appointed, at first for life and after 
B.C. 753 for ten years. At first the office was con- 
fined to one clan, the Medontidae, but afterwards 
was opened to all men of .noble birth, or Eupatrids. 
After B.C. 684 nine archons were appointed annually. 
The year was named after the first, who was called 
archon Eponymous; the second was called King 
Archon {Archon basileus\ and had jurisdiction in 
cases concerned with religion and the care of 
orphans. The third was called Polemarchos. His 
duties were originally connected with the armed 
levy, and till some time after B.C. 490 he took 
command in the field. Eventually his duty was to 
prepare cases connected with aliens for the courts. 
The remaining six archons were called ThesmotJietw, 
M givers of dooms," whose duties were always judicial : 
but these duties were afterwards confined to pre- 
liminary investigations, — the)' prepared cases for the 


courts. The council, or boule, met in the open upon 
the Areopagus, and was of immemorial antiquity. 
Most of its functions were afterwards performed, as 
we shall see, by another council established by Solon, 
and remodelled by Cleisthenes. The archons from 
very early times were appointed by lot either directly 
from the four primitive tribes, or from a number of 
names selected by them (ejc -irpoKphwy). At first only 
the Eupatrids were eligible for the office, but this dis- 
tinction gradually disappeared. Ability to furnish a 
man's own arms, and later on inclusion in the first 
assessment of Solon, took the place of birth, and 
later still it was thrown open to all citizens alike. 
Military commanders were from the first elected, 
and not chosen by lot. No doubt there were always 
some means of assembling and consulting the citizens, 
but we know nothing of the working of an assembly 
before the time of Solon, or of the internal state of the 
city. It was built round a fortified hill or Acropolis, 
but was not itself enclosed by walls, and the habits of 
the inhabitants seem to have been pastoral and agri- 
cultural rather than urban. An early division of the 
people into military men, or hoplites, labourers, or 
ergadeis, and a third class called Teleontes (the 
meaning of whose name is not clear), seems to show 
this, as does also another local division into "the men 
of the heights," " the men of the plain," and " the men 
of the sea-coast." 

There must always have been the occasional 
necessity of defending themselves in arms, and the 
Athenians appear very early to have found their way 
upon the sea, either as fishermen or as merchants. 


The poorness of the Attic soil made the importation 
of corn and timber a necessity from early times. Thus 
we find that before we have much definite information 
about the Athenians they had secured possession of 
Sigeium in the Troad, and had some connection with 
the Greek settlers in the Thracian Chersonese. They 
must, therefore, have early seen the necessity of 
keeping the Hellespont open for the passage of 
corn-ships. They did not, however, possess ships 
of war, and were still content with the harbour at 
Phalerum, which was neither as convenient nor as 
safe as that of the Piraeus. Nor had they in the 
seventh century shown signs of taking the intel- 
lectual primacy among the Greeks which was after- 
wards so conspicuous. The earliest literary activity 
after Homer was in other parts of Hellas. Attica, 
however, had within its borders a source of wealth 
which afterwards was of material assistance in 
strengthening her position. This was the district 
of Laurium, in the southern part of the country, the 
silver mines in which appear to have been known 
from very early times, but not to have been sys- 
tematically worked until towards the end of the 
sixth century B.C. 

The great constitutional changes in the direction 
of democracy were those introduced by Draco 
(arc. B.C. 621), by Solon (circ. B.C. 594), and by 
Cleisthenes (B.C. 507). Between the last two there 
was a period of unconstitutional government, or 
"tyranny," under Peisistratus and his sons (B.C. 
560-510). The significance of the Draconian reform 
was chiefly that it was the beginning of written laws, 



taking the place of an administration of justice by 
magistrates according to unwritten customs or tradi- 
tions. How far he anticipated Solon in modelling 
the constitution was always uncertain. The laws 
engraved on steles were sometimes attributed to him 
and sometimes to Solon. What remained in the 
popular imagination was the severity of the punish- 
ment for breaches of the law, which was always 
death. " Draco's laws were written in blood," it 
was said, and there was an end of the matter. 

The beginning of better things was attributed to 
Solon, though as a constitutional reformer he does 
not seem to have made violent changes. The 
council of 401, which prepared matters for the 
assembly, and was elected by lot from the four 
original tribes, does not seem to have originated 
with him. But he attempted a kind of compromise 
between pure oligarchy and pure democracy by 
neglecting distinctions of birth and dividing the 
people into classes or assessments (rtft//juara) , accord- 
ing to their wealth, the first class, consisting of those 
who possessed wealth equal to 500 medimni of corn, 
being alone eligible to the archonship. He also 
established popular courts, in which the office of 
dicast, or juryman, was open to all classes, even the 
lowest, or Thetes. The details of his constitutional 
measures will be better seen in connection with the 
reforms of Cleisthenes. The constitution as he left it 
was still oligarchical in that certain offices were not 
open to all ; but all men were on an equal footing 
as far as the power of obtaining redress in the law 
courts was concerned, of voting in the assembly, and 


of serving on juries. Solon had had before his mind 
the problem which continually presented itself in 
Greek States, how to restrain the selfishness of a noble 
class and grant the largest liberty to the people, 
while still keeping up the safeguards against tyranny ; 
for the tyrannus constantly took advantage of popular 
anger against the nobles to establish his power. 

But it was as the champion of the rights of the 
state, and still more as a benefactor of the poorer 
citizens, that Solon was best remembered. He had 
come to the aid of the state on three occasions. 
First, in prosecuting successfully the Athenian claim 
to the island of Salamis against Megara. Secondly, 
in promoting a sacred war which secured freedom of 
access to Delphi ; and, thirdly, in suggesting a means 
to relieve the people from a curse (ayog) brought 
upon them by the family called Alcmaeonidae in sup- 
pressing the conspiracy of Gylon (B.C. 612). The 
conspirators — whatever their object — had occupied 
the Acropolis, and being in danger of starvation 
had come down under promise of their lives, but 
had been put to death by the archon Megacles, 
who was one o( this family. Solon suggested the 
constitution of a court, by whose decision the whole 
family were exiled. These achievements, and, 
perhaps, the absence of the Alcmaeonidae, gave 
Solon the first place in the regard of his fellow- 
citizens, and he was able to crown his public services 
by a measure of relief for the impoverished farmers 
of Attica. They were overburdened with debt, their 
lands were mortgaged, and if the produce was 
insufficient for the discharge of their liabilities 


they might be forced to sell their families into 
slavery and eventually to become slaves them- 
selves. The debts which Solon wished to wipe out 
were these land mortgages. His SeisachtJieia, or 
"shaking off of burdens," either entirely removed 
them or so lightened them by deducting the interest 
already paid that they quickly disappeared ; and, at 
any rate, the power of the creditor to enslave his 
debtor was abolished. 

These various measures seem to have been 
established from about B.C. 594 onward, and he made 
the mistake common to reformers of thinking that he 
had arrived at finality. Causing magistrates and 
dicasts to take an oath not to introduce changes for 
ten years, he went upon his travels to avoid appeals 
for explanations or new measures. But in fact the 
contest between the classes was not ended, and 
Pisistratus, son of Hippocrates — a relation of Solon 
— about twenty years later took advantage of these 
quarrels to establish himself as tyrant. He began 
with the common device of asking for a bodyguard 
to protect him from the enemies of himself and the 
people. He was twice expelled — once for five years 
(B.C. 553-549), and again for ten years (B.C. 547-537). 
But with these intervals he and his son maintained 
their government from B.C. 560 to B.C. 510. It is 
true that he showed himself a reasonable and just 
ruler, allowing the laws and customs of the city to 
remain in force, doing much to adorn it, to foster 
literature, and to strengthen the State. Still it was 
"tyranny," which the nobles hated worse than a 
democracy ; and though after his second restoration 


Pisistratus retained power till his death in B.C. 527, 
he found it necessary to disarm the citizens. His 
son, Hippias, carried on for some years the tradition 
of good government. But his brother, Hipparchus, 
who seems to have acted as his second in command, 
was assassinated as he was marshalling the Panathenaic 
procession by Harmodius and Aristogeiton. Owing 
to a private grievance Hipparchus, who seems to 
have been haughty as well as dissolute, had inflicted 
a public insult on Harmodius by rejecting his sister 
from the chorus of maidens who formed part of the 
procession. Aristogeiton adopted his friend's quarrel, 
and both joined in the assassination (B.C. 514). Both 
lost their lives, but were regarded throughout 
Athenian history as the martyrs of liberty. Their 
statues stood in the agora among those of the 
national heroes, and their descendants enjoyed 
perpetual exemption from State burdens. This 
event changed the character of Hippias. He grew 
suspicious of all around him, and not only put 
many of the citizens to death on various pretexts, 
but surrounded himself with armed guards, and 
looked out for support from abroad, hiring mercenary 
troops, and making personal alliances with other 
tyrants, and probably with the Persian Satraps in 
Asia. He regarded Sigeium — the one Asiatic posses- 
sion of Athens — as the private property of his family, 
and placed one of his brothers in command of it. 
These measures, and especially the hiring of troops, 
must have involved fresh taxation and confiscations, 
which added to the resentment of the people, who 
had al reach' been annoyed by the insolence of 


Hipparchus and other members of the family. The 
banished Alcmaeonidae seized the opportunity. They 
had secured the support of the oracle at Delphi by 
their liberality in rebuilding the temple, which they 
had faced with marble, though they had only con- 
tracted to use the cheaper stone of the neighbourhood. 
This helped them to obtain aid from Sparta, always 
closely connected with Delphi and opposed to 
tyrannies. The Alcmseonidae, with their Spartan 
allies, entered Athens and besieged Hippias, who 
had taken refuge on the Acropolis, and after a time 
compelled him to consent to go into exile with all 
his family (B.C. 510). 

The Athenians were thus left at peace to recon- 
stitute their government. Cleisthenes, one of the 
Alcmaeonidae, became head of the reforming party, 
and having at length overcome his opponent Isagoras 
— who had obtained help from Cleomenes, of Sparta, 
and for a time held the chief power — he at length 
succeeded in carrying his measures. They went a 
long way towards securing an absolute democracy. 
The assembly, or ecclesia, in which every citizen of 
eighteen years of age could vote, had always been 
nominally supreme, but under the tyrants had no 
doubt been seldom summoned, and had exercised 
little practical control. It was henceforth called at 
stated times and business of all kinds, having first 
been prepared by the Boule, was brought before it. 
The cardinal point of Solon's constitution had been 
the division of the citizens into classes, according to 
the amount of their rateable property. The Archons 
and Strategi could only be selected from the first or 


Pentacosiomedimni. Lower offices were open to the 
next two classes, the Hippeis and Zeugitae, while the 
lowest class, the Thetes, could hold no office at all. 
For sixteen years after Cleisthenes the rule as to the 
Archonship remained in force, but for every other 
purpose the assessments were neglected. For selection 
of officials by lot or merit, for payment of taxes or 
performance of military duty, the whole people were 
divided into ten tribes, each containing a certain 
number of domes, or townships, not necessarily con- 
tiguous. Each tribe furnished (whether by lot or 
election) one of the nine archons or their secretary i 
one of the ten strategi, fifty members of the Boule 
which was thus raised to five hundred), and its 
quota of soldiers when an army was required — all 
this (except for a time in the case of the archons) 
without distinction as to wealth or position. The 
one thing a man had to show before exercising 
civil rights was citizenship. This was secured by 
the council of each deme registering every boy when 
he came to the age of sixteen. It was the duty of 
the demesmen to see that he was properly a citizen 
by birth, and they were liable to be fined by the 
Boule if they made a wrong entry. Once entered On 
this register a man's name could only be. removed by 
a "suit of alienation " (Siki/ fZsviao)' The only restric- 
tions as to eligibility to office were age (thirty years) 
and the necessity of passing a preliminary examina- 
tion, or dokimasia, at which any one was at liberty to 
allege against a man any disqualification, either of 
birth, neglect of duties, or dishonourable conduct. 
Every holder of an office was also subject to an audit 


(tvOvvi}) at the end of his year, at which any one was 
entitled to allege against him a breach of the laws. 
From the tribes also were selected six thousand 
dicasts each year — five thousand to serve in the law 
courts, as established by Solon, and one thousand 
kept in reserve to review the laws from time to time. 
The Boule acted as a restraint upon hasty legislation. 
The representatives sent by the several tribes took 
their turn for a month in acting as presidents of the 
assembly, and properly no measure could be pre- 
sented to it until it had been first passed by the 
Boule, which saw that it was correct in form and 
did not contradict existing laws. It was then called 
a proboleuma, and when passed by the ecclesia 
became a binding decree or law. 

Another safeguard established by Cleisthenes was 
the institution of ostracism, which was meant to 
prevent dangers arising from fierce party contests 
or rivalries between statesmen. If there appeared 
to be such a danger any one might move in the 
Assembly that there should be an ostracism. If the 
answer was in the affirmative, a day was fixed on 
which each citizen might write on a shell or piece of a 
pottery (oerpaicov) the name of the statesman whom he 
thought ought to leave the city. If six thousand 
voted, the man whose name appeared the oftenest 
had to leave Attica for ten years, though he did not 
forfeit his citizenship or his property. It was an 
institution which, under other names, is found else- 
where. Cleisthenes is said to have suffered under 
this law himself. We know hardly anything else 
about his life or the time of his death, though he was 

The rsr. or oStr-ac/sM 


looked back to as the real founder of Athenian 
democracy. He crosses the page of Greek history 
in this transaction and disappears. 

Under this changed constitution Athens rapidly 
increased in activity and importance. Though as 
yet she was inferior as a sea-power to both .Kgina 
or Corinth, we find her appealed to a few years later 
by the Ionian Greeks of Asia Minor as. next to 


Sparta, the strongest and most authoritative state in 
Greece. She had not shown as yet many signs of 
that literary and artistic supremacy which afterwards 
marked her out above all other states. As yet the art 
of oratory was undeveloped, and those who desired 
to persuade the people resorted rather to poetry, as 
we have seen that Solon did. Her supremacy in the 
dramatic art, indeed, was foreshadowed by the im- 


provements of Thespis, Phrynichus, and yEschylus, 
dating from the time of the Peisistratidae ; but it was 
not till after the Persian invasions that the heightened 
position of Athens began to attract men of letters and 
philosophers to her as the natural home of literature 
and art, while the beauty of her buildings and the 
wealth of ornament which glorified them roused the 
admiration of foreigners, and made a marked impres- 
sion on the character of her own citizens. Her great 
period in literature and art corresponded with the 
growth of her material power ; and though they 
declined with it also, she remained still the chosen 
home of philosophy and humanism long after the 
disasters which wrecked her political importance. 

Meanwhile, the islands of the ^Egean had been 
thoroughly Hellenised (B.C. 800-700), and had 
developed in their own way. Eubcea had in Chalcis 
one city at least which had risen to high importance 
as a commercial and colonising state ; but its constant 
quarrels with Eretria had weakened it, and it was 
soon to find itself united to Athens. The Cyclades 
for the most part were as yet thinly inhabited and 
poor, though the islands nearer the Asiatic coast — as 
Samos, Chios, and Lesbos — were the seats of a con- 
siderable trade in wine and pottery, and were 
beginning to acquire importance from their naval 
strength. Delos was the central place of the worship 
of Apollo and the common assembly of Ionians, and 
Thera was a stepping-stone between Crete and the 
mainland, just as Crete itself had helped to facilitate 
the passage of Phoenician and Egyptian influence 
into Greece. But by this time Crete was no longer 



the powerful state which excavations have proved 
her once to have been, and the constant quarrels 
between the independent cities of the island were 
rapidly making it a byword for lawlessness and 
misery. The Greek cities of Asia had attained to 
considerable prosperity, and it was in them and the 
adjacent islands, as we have seen, that the earliest 
post-Homeric literature flourished. But this progress 
was checked by the loss of political independence, 
without which nothing ever seemed to flourish among 
Greeks. How this came about will be the subject of 
the next chapter. In the fifth century B.C. the real 
life of Greece was in Europe, and it was there that 
she entered upon her glorious inheritance of genius. 




The Lydian kings and the Ionian cities — Croesus of Lydia — Cyrus 
and the Persians- The Ionian revolt, B.C. 501-495 — Darius, B.C. 
522 485 — Results of the Scythian expedition — Submission of 
Thrace and Macedonia to the Persian king — The Ionian revolt 
following the affair of Naxos. 

The first interruption to the independent develop- 
ment of Hellenic life occurred in Asia Minor, and as 
it led to the chief political service of the European 
Greeks— the rolling back of the invasions from the 
East — and greatly changed the mutual relations of 
the Hellenic states themselves, it is necessary to get 
a clear view of this event. 

We have seen in the seventh century B.C. that it 
was in the Greek cities of Asia — the ^Eolian colonies 
of the north-west and the Ionian colonies of the 
south-west — that Hellenic life seemed most active 
and vigorous. This was shown by the extraordinary 
activity in sending out fresh colonies, in the outburst 
of literature, and in the frequency of political move- 
ment and change. It was in these cities, it seemed at 
one time, that the Greeks were to work out their 


destiny. But this development was checked, in the 
first instance, by the riseof the Lydian kingdom, with 
a capital at Sardis. The inhabitants of Lydia once 
called Paeonians, had in some way, probably by con- 
quest, been so far absorbed by another race as to adopt 
their name. Whether the conquerors were called 
Lydians, or were led by a Lydus, we do not know. 
All we can tell is that at some period subsequent to 
the Homeric poems the change of name took place. 
The Lydians first became important under a dynasty 
founded by Gyges about B.C. 727. He and his suc- 
cessors made repeated efforts to get possession of the 
Ionian and other Greek towns on the coast, and this 
was finally effected by Croesus, who reigned from 
B.C. 560 to B.C. 546. 

The Ionian cities thus conquered consisted of 
twelve states — three in Caria, seven in Lydia, and 
two islands. 1 Of these the most populous and power- 
ful were Ephesus and Miletus, and the latter had 
made such a strenuous resistance to Croesus and his 
predecessors that it obtained specially favourable 
terms upon its submission. Though never politically 
powerful, the Ionians of Asia had been an adven- 
turous, bus\-, and thriving mercantile people. Their 
colonists had fringed the coasts of the Propontis and 
Euxine ; their seamen had made their way to Italy 
and Spain ; and to them and the /Eolians, as we have 
seen, belong most of the great names in literature 
before B.C. 550, and among them had been the earliest 

1 In Caria, Miletus, Myus, Priene ; in Lydia, Ephesus, Colophon, 
Lebedus, Teos, Clazomence, Phocaea, Erythroe ; the islands of Samos 
and Chios. 


political movements in the direction of democracy 
which were felt afterwards in most other parts of 

Their submission to a foreign power, therefore, 
was a great blow to Greek independence and Greek 
civilisation. The catastrophe was partly brought 
about by the passion for local autonomy, which is 
the chief characteristic of Greek politics. The mutual 
jealousy of these small states prevented them from 
combining even in the face of a common enemy. 
Again and again Miletus was abandoned by the 
others, and left to fight alone for a freedom which 
was thus steadily suppressed. The last of the Lydian 
monarchs — Crcesus — asserted his power over all the 
Greek cities in Asia, and forced them to pay him 
tribute. He began to reign in B.C. 560, and became 
renowned for his wealth and power. His treasure- 
houses were bursting with gold, all Asia west of the 
Halys, except Lycia and Cilicia, acknowledged his 
supremacy ; and having obtained command of the 
coast, he wished to add the islands of the ^Egean 
to his dominions. He was a man of some generosity 
of nature, and was interested, if he did not share, in 
Greek culture. Herodotus has preserved romantic tales 
of his career, and especially of the visit of Solon, the 
Athenian lawgiver to his court, which, whether true 
or, as chronologists will have it, impossible, yet gives 
a striking view of the Greek feeling as to great success 
and wealth. We are told that Solon was received by 
him with great distinction, and shown over his treasury 
with its vast accumulation of gold, and then asked by 
Crcesus, whom he regarded as the happiest of man- 


kind. To his surprise Solon first mentioned a private 
Athenian named Tellus, who had enjoyed a pros- 
perous life, with fair sons and grandsons, and had 
died fighting for his country in the very moment of 
victory ; and secondly, two Argives, called Cleobis 
and Biton, who at the feast of Hera dragged the 
waggon carrying their mother to the temple, because 
the oxen were late in coming, and for whom their 
mother then prayed the goddess to give them in 
reward the greatest blessing possible for man. The 
two youths after the banquet fell asleep in the temple, 
and never woke again. On Croesus showing wonder 
and mortification, Solon addressed to him the famous 
warning that no one could be called happy till his 
death. The legend went on to tell how this warning 
was justified soon afterwards by the accidental death 
of his son at the hands of Adrastus, whom Croesus 
had received and purified from the pollution of a 
former involuntary homicide. But Croesus had soon 
after this last calamity reason to fear for his own life 
and kingdom. 

The danger now threatening him was from the 
encroaching policy of Cyrus, founder of the Medo- 
Persian Empire. The great Assyrian Empire had 
broken up into two kingdoms, that of the Medes 
with Ecbatana for its capital, and that of the Baby- 
lonians. About 15. C. 559, Cyrus led clown a mountain 
tribe of Persae, seized Ecbatana and dethroned the 
last Median king, Astyages, and thus became lord of 
a large part of Upper Asia. His only rival was the 
King of Babylon, whom he also conquered in B.C. 538. 
But in the meantime his energy was directed to 


securing the seaboard of Asia Minor. When he had 
been reigning about ten years he had pushed on his 
conquest to the west as far as Cappadocia, and there 
only remained between him and the shore of the 
Mediterranean, the kingdom of Lydia. Crcesus, 
conscious of his danger, doubted for some time 
whether it would be best to await the attack at home 
or to cross the Halys into Cappadocia and, securing 
that district against the encroaching Cyrus, meet 
and defeat him there. He tried to strengthen himself 
with alliances with Labynetus of Babylon and 
Amasis, King of Egypt, whose interest it was that 
Cyrus should be weakened. He also turned his eyes 
to European Greece, and showed his knowledge 
of Greek feeling by beginning at Delphi. Having, 
it is said, convinced himself by a strange test that 
the oracle of Delphi was the one most to be depended 
upon, he sent presents of extraordinary magnificence 
to the temple. Other seats of Greek oracles were 
propitiated by his gifts, but those sent to Delphi 
surpassed all others in splendour. His envoys con- 
sulted the Pythia, and received in answer to their 
question, the enigmatic response that if Crcesus 
attacked the Persians he would destroy a great 
empire. She added the advice that he should seek 
an alliance with the most powerful state in Greece. 
There was at this time no doubt of Sparta occupying 
that position as a military power, though it seems 
probable that for the king's purposes the absence of 
naval strength made their alliance of little value. 
But the Pythia had reasons for supporting the 
prestige of Sparta, and the king's choice of that 


state may very likely have been suggested at Delphi. 
At any rate the offer was made and gladly accepted 
by the Spartan magistrates. Thus encouraged, 
Crcesus resolved upon the invasion of Cappadocia. 
At first he carried all before him, but before long he 
was met by an army hastily raised by Cyrus. A 
fierce battle gave no decided result, but Crcesus did 
not renew the struggle. He marched back to Sardis, 
intending to strengthen himself by means of the 
alliances he had made, and to renew the war in the 
spring with enlarged forces. On reaching Sardis he 
dispersed his army into winter quarters, intending to 
devote the season to his preparations for the next 
year's campaign. But Cyrus did not wait his 
convenience. Crcesus had scarcely completed these 
arrangements when news came that the Persians 
were advancing on Sardis.. He had only time to 
arm some of the Sardians and secure himself in the 
citadel, which was believed to be impregnable. But 
when the open town had been occupied for a short 
time by the enemy, the citadel was not long in 
sharing the same fate, and Crcesus fell into the 
hands of the conqueror (who treated him with 
humanity), and the whole kingdom of Lydia was 
added to the dominions of the Persian king 
(B.C. 546). 

The subjection of the Greek cities in Asia, and of 
the islands close to the coast, followed, in spite of a 
fitful resistance offered to the two Persian commanders 
left or sent by Cyrus to subdue them — Pactyas and 
Harpagus. The conquest was gradually extended 
to Caria and the Dorian Hexapolis, and before 


B.C. 540 all the Greek states in Asia, yEolian, Ionian, 
and Dorian alike — were tributary to the great king, 
and their citizens liable to serve in his armies. 

The change to these cities was not great ; they had 
been tributary to Croesus, they were now tributary to 
the King of Persia. Under Croesus they had enjoyed 
an internal independence and the administration of 
their own laws, under Cyrus they had the same 
privileges. But the Persian satraps at Sardis insisted 
as often as they could on the establishment of single 
rulers or tyrants in the several cities, who being 
chiefly dependent on Persian support for the main- 
tenance of their authority, would be subservient to 
the Persian court. In other respects the substitution 
of Persian for Lydian supremacy does not appear to 
have been inimical to the prosperity of the cities. 
Miletus was still strong and more independent than 
the others, and Ephesus was rendered prosperous, 
and on the whole content, by being the starting-place 
of the great road which the Persians constructed to 
Ecbatana. The islands felt the yoke less than the 
towns on the mainland, and one of them at least rose 
to considerable power. This was Samos under 
Polycrates (535-522), who for a brief time main- 
tained a powerful fleet and made foreign alliances, as 
with Amasis of Egypt. But his fate is an example 
of Persian policy. In B.C. 525, Cyrus had been dead 
three years (having ten years before added the 
Babylonian kingdom to his empire), and his son 
Cambyses (B.C. 528-521) had secured Phoenicia with 
its naval resources and was invading Egypt. Poly- 
crates duly sent his contingent to aid Cambyses in 


Egypt ; but showed his insecurity at home by 
sending to Egypt those who were discontented at 
his rule. These men returned and endeavoured 
vainly to dethrone him, and he seemed safer than 
ever. But by this time the Persian satrap at Sard is, 
Orcetes, had made up his mind that Polycrates must 
be got rid of. He was accordingly lured over to 
Asia by a pretended offer of Orcetes to join him in 
revolting from the king and seizing the treasures at 
Sardis ; and was arrested on his way and put to death. 
His brother, who was willing to be subservient to 
Persia, was put in his place. In this way the Persian 
power over the Greek states was steadily strengthened, 
and was now becoming continually more formidable. 
The conquest of Phoenicia had put in the king's 
hand a numerous and enterprising navy. The 
possession of Egypt and Cyprus seemed to give 
him another starting-place against Southern Greece. 
The inevitable attack, however, was delayed for many 
years, partly by domestic troubles and partly by the 
difficulty of securing Egypt. 

Cambyses's death in B.C. 522 was followed by the 
usurpation of the Pseudo-Smerdis, and by a counter 
revolution which put Darius, son of Hystaspes on the 
throne. For the first eight or nine years of his reign, 
he seems to have devoted himself, with two inter- 
ruptions caused by revolts in Babylon, to the organi- 
sation of his empire, which he divided into twenty 
satrapies, of which the first embraced the Greek cities 
in Asia Minor, the seat of government being Sardis. 
But he had married Atossa, the daughter of Cyrus, 
and he was expected to follow in the steps of his father- 


in-law, by undertaking some great military enterprise. 
The conquest of Greece was suggested to him, and he 
appointed a commission to make inquiries and report 
to him on the state of the country. But meanwhile 
his attention was distracted in another direction. 
For some hundred years, beginning about B.C. 650, 
Asia had suffered from invasions of northern races, 
Cimmerians and Scythians. The former ravaged 
the country from north to south, and even when 
defeated — as they were by the Cilicians — maintained 
themselves in mountain fastnesses from which they 
continued their devastations. The last invasion of 
Scythians, who were said to be pursuing the Cim- 
merians, had lasted twenty-eight years — from about 
B.C. 585 to 557 — and it was uncertain when the 
danger might recur, Darius therefore determined to 
take the offensive and invade the country to the 
north of the Black Sea. This is one motive assigned 
to the " Scythian expedition," and it is not certainly 
disproved by showing that the invaders of Asia were 
not those whom he attacked. The Persians would 
have no certain knowledge of the difference between 
Scythian tribes. Their object would be to show their 
power in these northern regions from which they 
were reported to have come. But another object, no 
doubt, was — as shown in the sequel — to prevent help 
coming from European Greeks across the Hellespont 
to his Greek subjects in northern Asia Minor. 

The story of this expedition (between B.C. 515-509) 
is given by Herodotus, probably from accounts which 
he found current in the northern Greek colonies. 
He may have learnt something also from the speech 


of Miltiades, when defending himself on the charge 
of " tyranny " after his retirement to Athens. We 
cannot be sure of these things, and it is not necessary 
here to discuss how much he knew of the geography 
of the lands beyond the Danube. It is what happened 
on the left bank of that river that affected the Greeks. 
Darius crossed the Thracian Bosporus and marched 
north to the Danube, on which a bridge of ships had 
been prepared. In his army were contingents from 
many Greek states under their respective tyrants. 
He seems to have been fully aware of the difficulties 
in the way of his design, which, according to 
Herodotus, was to march round the head of the 
Euxine and re-enter Asia through Colchis along its 
eastern shore. In the absence of all certain knowledge 
of the country, the rivers, the wild tribes to be en- 
countered, he wisely resolved to keep a retreat open 
by maintaining the bridge of ships across the Danube. 
It shows some confidence in the Greek character, or 
in the hold he had upon the men themselves, that he 
entrusted the maintenance and defence of this bridge 
to the tyrants of the Greek towns with some of their 
own troops. Herodotus says that this was suggested 
by Goes, the commander of the contingent from 
Mitylene, in Lesbos. It is such an obvious pre- 
caution that he must be held likely to have thought 
of it himself. The selection of the Greek tyrants for 
the service may have been due to Coes. His direction 
to them was to wait sixty days, to be reckoned by 
the daily untying of a knot in a leathern thong, and 
if he had not returned by that time, to break up the 
bridge and sail home. The sixty days passed, and, 


instead of the reappearance of the king, a strong 
body of Scythian horsemen rode up to the bank of 
the Danube, where the Greek ships formed the end 
of the bridge. They affirmed that Darius was so 
completely surrounded that he must perish ; and 
they exhorted the Greeks to unfasten their vessels 
and sail away. The Greek rulers thereupon held 
council, and Miltiades, the tyrant of the Thracian 
Chersonese, 1 who was destined hereafter to be the 
victor at Marathon, advised that they should do as 
the Scythians suggested, and thus restore Ionia and 
the other Greek cities to freedom. But another of 
the tyrants, Histiaeus of Miletus, argued against this 
counsel on the ground that they depended for their 
authority in their several states upon Persian support. 
This argument prevailed, and thus when Darius 
returned the ships, which had been loosened from 
their moorings, were ready to complete the bridge 
once more, and he crossed in safety. 

The king himself hastened to the Thracian Cher- 
sonese and crossed to Asia from Lesbos and took up 
his abode for some time at Sardis. Perhaps the 
march beyond the Danube had only been meant 
as a kind of military demonstration. At any rate 
nothing had been accomplished. Still the expedition 
was not sterile south of the river. He left Megabazus 
and a strong force with orders to subdue the Greek 
towns on the coast of Thrace and the kingdom of 
Macedonia. The Thracian cities were forced to 
submit ; the flourishing and industrious Paeonians 

1 His uncle, also named Miltiades, had been invited from Athens to 
hold this office, in which this Miltiades succeeded him. 


were transferred bodily to Asia ; and Otanes, the 
successor of Megabazus, extended these conquests 
to Antandros, Lemnos, Imbros, Calchedon, and 
Byzantium. Tokens of submission were then de- 
manded from the King of Macedonia, and, though 
the Persian envoys behaved with such insolence that 
they were assassinated by order of the king's son, 
these tokens were given. 

The operations thus briefly noticed seem to have 
occupied several years, during most of which Darius 
was far away at Susa, while his half-brother Arta- 
phernes was the Satrap at Sardis in charge of all 
that concerned the Greek towns. The supremacy of 
Persia does not seem to have been exercised with 
harshness, and accordingly there was a brief period 
of comparative repose. 

Nevertheless the position of the Persians in the 
North, and especially their command of the Helles- 
pont and Bosporus, must have seemed a menace 
to Greek freedom, and was especially annoying to 
Athens, which depended greatly for its supply of corn 
upon the trade from the coasts of the Propontis and 
Black Sea. Accordingly we find that the Athenians, 
after trying to make terms with Artaphernes, made 
up their minds to adopt a steadily hostile attitude 
to Persia. Their first attempts at negotiation were 
met by the rigid demand for " earth and water," as 
a necessary condition of any alliance. Though the 
recent expulsion of Hippias (B.C. 510) had involved 
them in conflicts with Sparta, the Athenians would not 
purchase the Satrap's assistance at this price. Later 
on (B.C. 505) they were further angered by a direct 


order from Artaphernes to readmit Hippias (who 
had retired to Sigeium and thence visited Sardis) 
"if they wished to be safe." This determined the 
Athenians to hold no terms with him, but openly to 
oppose the Persians everywhere. They soon had 
an opportunity of giving a practical exhibition of 
this policy. 

For about five years (B.C. 507-502) after the 
Persian power had been asserted in the Greek cities 
of Thrace, and in the northern islands, the period 
of unfamiliar calm remained unbroken by alarms of 
war or revolution. But that there was smouldering 
discontent was shown by the rapidity with which the 
flame of rebellion spread when once the spark was 
put to the material. The jealousy of the Persian 
government was easily aroused. Histiaeus of 
Miletus had been rewarded for his services in 
keeping up the bridge over the Danube by a grant 
of land at Myrkinos, near what was afterwards 
Amphipolis. There he settled, leaving the govern- 
ment of Miletus to his son-in-law Aristogaras. But 
before long his activity in his new home woke the 
distrust of the Persian commander Otanes, and in 
consequence of his report Histiaeus was summoned 
to join the king on the honourable pretext of the 
need of his counsel, and was taken off by him in 
his train to Susa. Meanwhile affairs seemed going 
smoothly in Ionia without any sign of an outbreak. 

But this peaceful state of things came to an 
end in B.C. 502 with a revolution in the island of 
Naxos, the largest of the Cyclades. The Persians 
as yet had no hold on the Cyclades, though Arta- 


phernes was always on the lookout to obtain one. 
The island of Naxos, which had been colonised by 
[onians from Athens, had gone through many 
political changes. Finally it had been conquered 
by the Athenian Pisistratus, who set up or re- 
stored Lygdamis as its tyrant. About B.C. 525 his 
government had been replaced by an oligarchy. Hut 
the democratic party was able, in K.C. 503, to expel 
a number of the oligarchs and establish a free 
constitution. The banished men retired to Miletus 
and appealed for help to Aristagoras, with whom 
they had ties of friendship (Zzvia). Aristagoras 
listened to the appeal and undertook to apply to 
Artaphernes, the Satrap at Sardis, for the necessary 
naval support. Artaphernes readily caught at a 
chance of establishing Persian influence in the 
Cyclades. There was some delay from the neces- 
sity of sending to Susa for the king's permission, and 
for collecting and manning two hundred ships. But 
the royal consent was duly obtained, and the fleet 
was ready in the spring of B.C. 501, under the joint 
command of Aristagoras and the king's cousin 
Megabates. The secret had been kept from the 
Naxians, who were made to believe that the fleet 
was destined for the Hellespont. But a violent 
quarrel arose between Megabates and Aristagoras 
as to the punishment of a Carian captain, and Mega- 
bates in revenge sent secret information to Naxos 
of the real object of the expedition. When the fleet 
arrived, therefore, the town of Naxos was found in 
a state of defence and prepared to stand a long siege. 
There was neither money nor adequate provision for 


such an operation, and after spending large sums of 
his own property Aristagoras found it impossible to 
take Naxos, and was, therefore, unable to fulfil his 
promise to Artaphernes that the expedition should 
bring in enough to pay its cost. He felt certain that 
this ill-success would involve the loss of his governor- 
ship of Miletus and, perhaps, of his life. His only 
chance seemed to be to cover his failure by insti- 
gating some general movement in Ionia sufficient to 
distract the attention of Artaphernes. 

In the midst of his perplexity he received a mes- 
sage from Histiaeus, who, wearied of his detention at 
Susa, hoped that a movement in Ionia would secure 
his being sent down to deal with it. According to 
the well-known story the message was conveyed by 
two words tattooed on a slave's head — "raise Ionia" 
('Iwviav avaarriGov). This chimed in well with his 
own views, and steps were at once taken. An agree- 
ment was come to whereby the tyrants of the several 
Greek towns were persuaded or forced to abdicate, 
and the Paeonians were advised to quit the district 
in which they had been placed by Darius and return 
to their own lands. Aristagoras then set sail for 
European Greece in the hope of getting support 
from Sparta or Athens. His proposal was rejected 
by the Spartan king, Cleomenes, who, besides the 
national objection to distant expeditions, was intent 
about this time upon crushing Argos. At Athens 
he found a readier welcome. The Athenians were 
just entering on their upward career ; they had got 
rid of their tyrants, and were ready to act as 
champions of freedom everywhere. They were 


specially irritated with Artaphernes, as we have 
seen by his support of the banished tyrant Hippias. 
They were glad of an opportunity to show him that 
their enmity was formidable. A fleet of twenty 
ships was prepared, and accompanied by five triremes 
from Eretria in Eubcea started for Ephesus in the 
spring of B.C. 500. 

The preparations for a general rising had made 
considerable progress. The co-operation of the 
other Ionian and /Eolian states was secured by 
deposing the tyrants, Aristagoras himself ostensibly 
laying down his power, though he kept it under 
another name. The fleet that had been collected 
for the attack on Naxos was next secured and 
increased by ships from various states. These 
measures Aristagoras had taken before he went on 
his mission to Greece. On his return, encouraged 
by his success at Athens-, he took the first open step 
in the revolt from Persia by securing the removal of the 
Pseonians. Soon after this the Athenian and Eretrian 
force arrived at Ephesus. The men landed there, and 
being joined by some Ionians, marched upon Sardis. 
The town was easily taken, and apparently by an 
accident set on fire. But they could not take the 
citadel, and they soon heard that a large army, 
hastily summoned by the order of Artaphernes, was 
advancing on Sardis. They hastily retreated, but 
were overtaken and severely defeated near Ephesus. 
The leader of the Eretrians was killed, but the 
Athenians seem to have got on board their ships 
and sailed home. 

The revolt was now in full swing, and though the 


attack on Sardis had failed, the Ionian fleet was as 
yet untouched. Some time was required by the 
Persians to bring ships from Phoenicia capable of 
contending with the rebel fleet, which accordingly 
coasted along as far as Byzantium, successfully 
persuading the towns to join the revolt, and then 
returned southwards as far as Caria and Cyprus. 

The revolt thus begun lasted till B.C. 494. But 
after two years (500-498) it became chiefly a question 
of naval supremacy. The Persians having in the 
past two years recovered Cyprus and Caria, in spite 
of several disasters, left the fleet of the Ionians and 
their allies alone for a time and proceeded steadily 
to reduce the various towns, keeping up all the time 
a somewhat loose siege of Miletus. Aristagoras lost 
heart and fled to Myrcinus in Thrace, where he 
perished in combat with the natives. When Histiaeus 
came down to the coast, having persuaded Darius 
to send him to quiet the outbreak, he found that 
his part in promoting it was well known to Arta- 
phernes, and that it was already almost hopeless of 
success. Finally, being refused admission to his own 
Miletus, he escaped to the Hellespont, where he 
maintained himself for some years and did not perish 
till the end of the revolt had come. That end was 
now inevitable. The Ionians in the allied fleet were 
ill-disciplined and averse to hardships, and though 
for a time they combined and submitted to the 
orders of an elected general, Dionysius of Phocaea, 
they soon resented his strictness and broke up into 
squadrons which went where they pleased. The 
Persians had now collected a fleet of 600 vessels, 



and though no state but the Samians consented to 
surrender, in the battle of Lade (B.C. 495) the allies 
were utterly defeated and scattered. This destruction 
of their sea power was followed by the fall of Miletus 
(iJ.c. 494), and then all hope of resistance was at an 
end. Histiaeus, who had taken refuge at Byzantium, 
endeavoured to escape, but was captured and put to 

The Persians followed up their success in B.C. 493 
byre-occupying Byzantium, the Thracian Chersonese, 
and the islands and states which had joined in, or 
sympathised with, the revolt. Artaphernes seems 
to have made an attempt at a more permanent 
settlement of Ionia, establishing courts of arbitration 
to prevent the continual bickering and fighting 
between the states, and making such divisions of 
the towns that the burden of taxation might be 
more equally distributed and less felt. But the 
Persian court had now resolved on a still more 
important movement, the results of which will be 
described in the next chapter. 



Failure of the first invasion under Mardonius, B.C. 492 — The Medizing 
States in Greece— Quarrel of Athens with .Egina. B.C. 491 — 
Second Persian invasion, B.C. 490 — Capture of Eretria — Battle of 
Marathon — Effects of the battle — The Athenians build a fleet. 
r.c. 490-4S0— The coming invasion — Artemisium — Thermopylae — 
The Greek fleet retire to the bay of Salamis — Will the Greeks 
fight at Salamis ? — Disappearance of the Persian fleet — The Cam- 
paign of B.C. 479 — Battle of Mykale — The League of Samos, Chios, 
and Lesbos— The Confederacy of Delos — Aristides — Effect of the 
Confederacy of Delos — The battles of the Eurymedon. B.C. 466 — 
Western Hellas — The continued rise of Athens. 

In the great contest of East and West the first 
struggle had ended in favour of the East. When the 
Ionian revolt had flickered out the king determined 
to assert his authority in Greece by inflicting signal 
punishment upon Eretria and Athens for the aid 
given to the Ionians. But first he tried to secure the 
allegiance of the Hellenic towns in Asia. His nephew 
and son-in-law Mardonius was sent down to Lower 
Asia in B.C. 492 with a double commission. He was 
to conciliate the Greek states by deposing the tyrants 
and establishing democracy as their form of home 
government ; and, secondly, he was to lead an expedi- 



tion against Greece. He performed the first part of 
his commission, but in attempting to carry out the 
second he met with a terrible shipwreck whilst 
rounding the promontory of Nymphaeum (at the 
foot of Mount Athos) in which the greater part of 
his fleet and more than twenty thousand men were 

The expedition, however, was not entirely fruitless, 
for the king's authority in Thrace was strengthened, 
and the island of Thasos was deprived of its fleet and 
fortifications. Thus secured in the North, the king 
in the following year (B.C. 491) sent envoys into 
Greece to demand earth and water — the symbols of 
submission — from all the principal states. Many of 
the continental cities complied, especially those in 
Thessaly and Bceotia (except Plataea), as well as 
Argos in Peloponnese. Athens and Sparta almost 
alone of the greater cities refused, and even put the 
envoys to death. The islands of the ^Egean, how- 
ever, reluctantly complied, for the fleets which the 
possession of Phoenicia now put into the king's hand 
gave him supremacy at sea. 

The Athenians were specially indignant that 
/Egina, almost in sight of the Piraeus, should 
have yielded to the king's command. It was too 
good an opportunity of humiliating an old rival to 
be lost, and a formal complaint was promptly lodged 
at Sparta, as the acknowledged head of Greece. The 
kings of Sparta at that time were Demaratus and 
Cleomenes. The latter was half crazed, but always 
ready to assert Spartan supremacy over neighbours. 
Demaratus was inclined to support the /Eginetans, 


but he was got rid of by the help of an oracle from 
Delphi (obtained by bribery) which cast a doubt on 
his legitimacy. He fled to the Persian court and 
Leotychides was made king in his place. The 
/Eginetans were speedily compelled to give hostages 
for their loyalty, who were detained at Athens. 
Presently on the madness and death of Cleomenes 
the Spartans repented of their action and sent 
Leotychides to Athens to demand the restoration of 
the hostages. The refusal of the Athenians led to 
acts of retaliation on the part of /Egina, resulting 
in a state of open war, which seemed likely to enlist 
other states on one side or the other. 

The quarrel, however, was suspended next year 
(B.C. 490) by the approach of a great danger. In the 
spring of that year a large fleet had mustered by the 
king's order on the coast of Cilicia under the com- 
mand of Datis and Artaphernes. This time it took 
the Island route across the ALgean. It first touched 
at Naxos, where the city and temples were burnt and 
those of the inhabitants who did not escape to the 
mountains were captured. It next touched at Delos, 
where, however, no damage was done, from reverence 
to the sacredness of the place, an outrage upon which 
might have alienated even the King's partisans in 
Greece. From Delos the fleet proceeded to Carystus 
on the south of Eubcea. The Eretrians now 
recognised their danger. They sent urgent messages 
to Athens for help, but there was, as usual, a party 
within their own walls who welcomed the invader ; 
and on the seventh day after the arrival of the fleet 
the town was surrendered, and such of its inhabitants 


as had not escaped to the interior were removed to 
the island of Styra to await transport to Asia. 

And now came the crowning event of the invasion 
which has made the name of one man and of one 
small spot of earth immortal. In the Persian fleet 
was Hippias, once tyrant of Athens, now old and 
weary, but still set upon recovering his power. It 
was at his suggestion that the Persian commanders 
selected the shore of the Bay of Marathon as the 
place of landing upon Attic soil. The original inten- 
tion had probably been to bail round Sunium and 
blockade Phalerum. But Hippias knew the advan- 
tages of Marathon, for he had once before landed 
there with his father Pisistratus, when he, too, came 
to capture Athens. The Persians, moreover, had 
brought a considerable body of horsemen, and skirt- 
ing the bay of Marathon was a plain six miles in 
'ength and about a mile and a half in depth which 
would be more convenient for cavalry than the ground 
round the city. 

Meanwhile, at Athens there had been a division of 
opinion. One party had wished to await the attack 
of the Persians at home, whether they came by sea to 
Phalerum or overland from Oropus or its neighbour- 
hood ; the other wished to march out of the city and 
meet them on the road which they believed the 
Persians intended to take. Miltiades, who had 
returned to Athens as a private citizen, after having 
been tyrant of the Chersonese, and was now one of the 
strategi,had all along been in favour of the latter course, 
and the news that the enemy had actually landed at 
Marathon seems to have settled the doubt. With 


nine thousand men the generals and the Polemarch 
Callimachus, after sending a swift runner to Sparta 
for help, marched out to Marathon and occupied the 
precinct of Hercules on the slope of a mountain near 
which the road to Athens passed, whence they could 
see the enemy encamped on the plain below. 

There was again a division of opinion as to whether 
they should attack at once. The votes of the ten 
generals were equally divided, and the casting vote 
therefore being with Callimachus, he was persuaded 
by Miltiades to give it in favour of attacking. The 
four generals who were on the same side gave up 
their days of command to Miltiades, whose object 
seems to have been not so much to make an 
immediate attack as to have the power of attacking 
whenever he thought the moment had come. The 
famous battle was, in fact, fought on his own day of 
command, and seems to have been decided upon 
owing to information signalled to Miltiades by some 
Ionians in the Persian army to the effect that the 
Persian cavalry had been re-embarked. For a 
treasonable party in Athens had communicated to 
the enemy — perhaps by the signal of a flashing shield 
—that the fighting force had left Athens ; and the 
Persian generals seem thereupon to have taken 
measures at once to sail round Sunium, hoping to 
find the city defenceless. With Eretria in their 
hands, commanding the Attic coast, this would pro- 
bably have been their wisest course in any case. 
Their large fleet would easily have closed the harbour 
of Phalerum or Piraeus. Athens was an open town ; 
there were as yet no long walls joining it to its 


(From the monument of Dexi/eox of Athens, who fell in zvar with the 
Corinthians, H.c 394-) 


harbour, and though the Acropolis might have held 
out, the king's object of removing the bulk of the 
inhabitants would probably have been accomplished. 
Miltiades saw that his chance had come, when the 
hurry and bustle of re-embarkation neutralised the 
advantage of numbers. Shortly after arriving at the 
Heracleum he had been reinforced by a thousand 
Plataeans, always eager to show their adherence to 
Athens and their difference with Thebes. The whole 
Greek force, therefore, consisted of ten thousand men 
They had the advantage of advancing down hill ; but 
their centre was too weak, their line having been 
widely extended to prevent being outflanked ; for the 
Persian embarkation was covered by a considerably 
superior force. The Athenian centre, therefore, was 
driven back, while on the two wings they were 
successful in turning the enemy's line. Instead of 
pursuing, however, the two wings closed in and 
restored the battle in the centre ; and before long the 
Persian covering force was a helpless mob. Some 
were driven upon the marsh which bounds the 
eastern side of the plain of Marathon, and were there 
cut to pieces. The rest attempted to get on board 
the ships and push out to sea. The Athenians only 
succeeded in preventing seven of the ships from being 
got afloat, though they pressed the men hard and 
killed a large number in the struggle. The Persian 
loss was estimated at 6,400, that of the Athenians at 
192, including the Polemarch. The Persian fleet was 
thus but slightly diminished and might still have 
easily, it would seem, have blockaded the Athenian 
harbours. But though it appeared off Phalerum on 


the next or following day, no attempt to blockade or 
to land was made. One story is that Datis was 
killed and that Artaphernes was unwilling to act on 
his own responsibility. A still stronger reason is 
that they found an unresisted landing no longer 
possible. The victorious Athenian army had marched 
home on the morning after the battle and was in 
waiting to receive them. Their partisans in the city, 
therefore, could not venture to invite them to land. 
Whatever the motive, they turned homewards, only 
stopping to take the Eretrians from Styra. 

The battle of Marathon was only the first act in 
the struggle, but its moral effect in Greece was very 
great. It taught the Greeks that the forces of the 
king were not invincible in spite of their numbers, 
and it filled them with national pride and a sanguine 
patriotism. Above all, it raised Athens in public 
estimation and gave the Athenians high ideas as to 
their power and destiny. Sentiment counts for much 
in national life, and the heroes of Marathon were not 
only a pride but an inspiration. The victory was 
wholly Athenian. The Spartans had been slow to 
send aid, and their men only arrived on the day after 
the battle and could claim no part in it, and some- 
thing of their acknowledged primacy passed to the 

The ten years of freedom from Persian attack 
which followed were years of steady growth for 
Athens, especially as a sea-power. There was 
more than one reason for this. Events made it 
evident that ships of war were a necessity to the 
state ; in Themistocles it had a far seeing statesman 


capable of carrying out such a policy ; while a 
development of the silver mines at Laurium supplied 
the requisite funds. The renewal of the quarrel with 
iEgina after B.C. 490 made an increase in the war 
fleet necessary, and Herodotus remarks that the 
ships built for this purpose proved the salvation 
of Greece. But the fleet had been gradually 
increased before. In the /Egenitan war of B.C. 
492-1 the Athenians had been obliged to borrow or 
hire triremes from Corinth, but in the year after the 
battle they were able to furnish Miltiades with 
seventy when he asked for a commission to exact 
money from the islanders who had favoured the 
Persians, and before B.C. 484 the state was able to 
maintain at least two hundred. The possession of 
triremes, indeed, was becoming general in the maritime 
states, and Corinth, which had been the earliest to 
use them, still had a respectable number, while in the 
west Corcyra and Syracuse each possessed formidable 
fleets. But no state seems to have made such a 
rapid advance in this period as Athens. The credit 
is chiefly due to Themistocles who continually urged 
the policy upon his fellow-citizens, persuading them 
to devote the royalties from the mines to shipbuild- 
ing instead of distributing the money among them- 

It was fortunate that he had his way in this, for the 
Persian danger was not over, as some thought, with 
the victory of Marathon. It had — as Themistocles 
always maintained — only begun. Darius had no 
mind to accept his defeat. For three years Asia 
was in all the hurry and bustle of preparation for a 


new invasion of Greece with still more formidable 
numbers. But in B.C. 486 a revolt in Egypt dis- 
tracted the attention of the king, and before it was 
put down Darius died (B.C. 485). His successor, 
Xerxes, was engaged for the first two years in 
Egypt in necessary preparations for the suppression 
of the revolt there. But even when he returned from 
his successful campaign he seems, in spite of gran- 
diloquent language, to have hesitated as to renewing 
the invasion of Greece, which was not desired by a 
large number of his Council and of his subjects. Yet 
when he finally resolved upon it preparations on a 
vast scale were at once begun and continued for more 
than three years (B.C. 484-481). More than half a 
million of fighting men, drawn from innumerable 
tribes, were mustered in Cappadocia, and in the 
autumn of B.C. 481 marched to Sardis, where the 
King himself met and wintered with them. At the 
same time a fleet of twelve hundred triremes, besides 
a vast number of smaller vessels, from Phoenicia, 
Egypt, Cyprus, Cilicia, and many other places, was 
ordered to proceed to the Hellespont, and thence to 
coast along as nearly as possible parallel with the 
land forces. To facilitate the passage of this great 
army a bridge composed of vessels lashed together 
was constructed across the Hellespont, and Herodotus 
delights to tell, as an illustration of Persian insolence, 
how, when the first bridge was broken up by a storm, 
the king ordered the waves to be scourged and fetters 
thrown into the sea. A second and stronger bridge 
was then constructed. The Strymon was also bridged 
near the site of what was afterwards Amphipolis ; 

( Vatica n j Must u/ii.) 


while to save the fleet one great danger a canal was 
cut across the isthmus of Mount Athos. The march 
began early in B.C. 480 ; the Hellespont was safely 
crossed, and the advance through Macedonia went 
steadily on, while the fleet made its way to Therm a 

The preparation of such a vast armament could 
not, of course, be unknown in Greece. A congress of 
representatives from the southern states met at Corinth 
in the autumn of B.C. 481. Their first measure was 
to send spies to Sardis to see whether the report was 
true. They were captured, but allowed by the king 
to see everything and return safe, in hope that their 
report might terrify the Greeks and prevent resis- 
tance. The congress had, indeed, a formidable state 
of things to face. Greece was disunited, and there 
was a powerful party in nearly all the country north 
of Attica which was prepared from fear or disaffection 
to welcome the invaders. The seaboard of Thrace 
and Macedonia was already subject to the king ; 
most of the islands of the ^Egean had been com- 
pelled to submit and even to furnish him with ships. 
In Thessaly the powerful clan of the Aleuadae of 
Larisa had invited the invasion, and though there 
was a loyal party in Thessaly, it was too weak to 
resist. Only two states in Bceotia stood out — Plataja 
and Thespiae, while the Phocians were divided and 
useless. Nor did the congress succeed in getting 
support elsewhere. The Argives refused all help. 
The Cretans evaded a direct promise by a reference 
to Delphi. In the West, Gelo of Syracuse, the most 
powerful sovereign in Sicily, would only help on con- 


dition of commanding by sea or land ; while the next 
most powerful sea power in the west, Corcyra, pro- 
mised help but gave none. In B.C. 480, therefore, 
when Xerxes was already on the march, there was 
no army ready to resist him. A fleet, however, of 
about 270 triremes, of which the Athenians contri- 
buted half, had been collected and was ready for 
action under the command of the Spartan Eurybiades. 
It took up its position at Artemisium, on the north of 
Eubcea. On the request of some loyal Thessalians, 
an expedition had earlier in the year been sent to 
the vale of Tempe, the men being landed at Halus, 
on the Pegasaean Gulf, but it found the pass indefen- 
sible and had hastily returned. As the Persian army 
and fleet approached, the Spartans were at length 
induced to send a small force under their king 
Leonidas to guard the narrow defile of Thermopylae. 
It consisted of 300 Spartan hoplites, each accom- 
panied by seven helots, and some allies from other 
states. At these two points, therefore, Thermopylae 
and Artemisium, the first resistance was to be 

The Greek fleet was a composite one, and though 
the Athenians, who supplied the greater part, were 
under the influence of Themistocles, who was eager 
to encounter the Persian fleet and prevent its further 
progress south, many of the other captains were for 
retreating to the Peloponnese, and separating to their 
various states, or at any rate for making a stand only 
when nearer to what seemed a place of safety. When 
the Persian ships were approaching the coast of 
Magnesia, opposite Artemisium, the alarm was so 


great that Themistoclcs could no longer restrain 
the Greek captains, and the fleet sailed to Chalcis, 
on the Euripus, the narrowest point between Eubcea 
and the mainland. But when the Persians, who were 
in an exposed position, had suffered severely from a 
great storm, the Greeks mustered courage to return 
to Artemisium, and there for three days the two 
fleets were engaged. On the first day the result was 
rather in favour of the Greeks, and the success was 
confirmed by another violent storm during the night, 
in which the Persians, being still in the more exposed 
position, suffered much more than the Greeks. On 
the second day nothing of importance was done, 
though the Greek fleet was reinforced by a new- 
Athenian squadron. .On the third day a more deter- 
mined effort was made by the Persians, and though 
nightfall prevented a victory on either side, the Greek 
fleet suffered very severely. And now the news 
reached them that the Spartan army at Thermopyla: 
was destroyed and the country open for the advance 
of Xerxes upon Attica and the Peloponnese. 

The story of Thermopylae is one of the most 
famous in history. At that time between Mount 
CEta and the sea for about a mile there was a narrow 
road scarcely wide enough for two waggons to pass 
each other, and at one point defended by a wall 
built by the Phocians to keep off Thessalian 
marauders. Here Leonidas, with his small army, 
had established himself. The king could not believe 
that such a puny force would venture to withstand 
the grand army, though warned by Demaratus, the 
exiled Spartan king, that the Spartans would never 



yield their ground. After waiting four days in vain 
expectation of some sign of submission, he launched 
some of his best troops at the foolhardy opponents, 
with orders to clear the way. But two days of fierce 
fighting left the Greeks unconquered and the pass 
still closed to the invaders. But on the evening of 
the second day a Malian named Ephialtes demanded 
an audience of the king, and offered to guide a force 
over the height on the land side of the pass (afterwards 
called Callidromos) by a path only used by shep- 
herds, which would lead them to the rear of the 
Greeks. Xerxes, who had watched the failure of 
his troops with signs of violent emotion and anxiety, 
eagerly accepted the offer. At nightfall, just as the 
watch-fires were being lit, ten thousand of the finest 
troops, called the " Immortals," started under the gui- 
dance of Ephialtes to cross the height. By daybreak 
they were approaching the summit. Just below the 
crest a thousand Phocians had been stationed to guard 
against this danger, for Leonidas was aware of the 
existence of this path. The hill was thickly covered 
with oak forest, and no view of the coming enemy 
was possible, though there was a bright moon. But 
in the clear morning air the sound of their trampling 
through the brushwood reached the ears of the 
Phocians. Yet their warning was brief; the Per- 
sians seemed to start suddenly into sight, surprised 
themselves to see men hastily getting under arms 
where they had expected a bare mountain top. 
They fancied that they were the dreaded Spartans 
who had repulsed them the day before, but being 
reassured by learning the truth from Ephialtes, they 


began pouring in volleys of arrows. The Phocians 
retired hastily to the crest of the hill, and the 
Persians, following the winding path which avoided 
the summit, descended with all speed on the other 

News had come early to the Greeks at Thermopyke 
that they were betrayed. The sacrifices were un- 
favourable, and deserters bringing in the intelligence 
were soon followed by their own scouts conveying the 
same news. The allies immediately decided to depart, 
or were dismissed by Leonidas, that no more Greeks 
should be lost. For him and his three hundred 
retreat was intolerable. A Spartan was bound to 
die at his post ; it was undying disgrace to quit it. 
The Theban and Thespian contingents alone remained. 
The Thespians, like the Spartans, preferred death to 
desert their post, while the Thebans, being known to 
medirjc, were retained as hostages by Leonidas, but 
took the first opportunity of deserting. 

At sunrise Xerxes poured libations to his god, and 
a few hours later started for the pass. The Spartans, 
knowing themselves to be surrounded, determined to 
die fighting in the open. They quitted their shelter 
behind the Phocian wall and advanced into the wider 
part of the plain. A desperate hand-to-hand fight 
followed. Two of the king's brothers fell ; many of 
the Persians were driven into the sea or were trodden 
under the feet of their own men. Presently Leonidas 
fell, and an obstinate battle raged round his corpse. 
But in the midst of it the Spartans found the ten 
thousand "Immortals" on their rear. They made 
one more desperate charge, forced their way back 


to the wall, and thence to a piece of elevated ground, 
where for some time they defended themselves gal- 
lantly with swords, hands, and teeth, till, becoming 
completely surrounded, they were overwhelmed with 
missiles and perished to a man. Only one soldier, who 
happened not to be engaged that day, survived of the 
three hundred. But so strong was the Spartan senti- 
ment on the disgrace of such survival that his life 
was a burden to him, and he courted and found death 
next year at Platsea. 

The result of this famous battle was to leave the 
way clear for the advance of Xerxes into Attica. 
On the frontier of Bceotia he divided his forces into 
two columns, one of which, led by the king himself, 
marched towards Athens, the other moved upon 
Delphi, only to be frightened there by earthquake 
and miracle. When this disaster was known at 
Artemisium it was no longer possible to restrain 
officers or men. They thought that while they were 
warring in the north the irresistible army of Xerxes 
would be overrunning the land, and they would soon 
have no country for which to fight. Themistocles 
could not persuade them to remain, and the whole 
fleet rowed through the Euripus, rounded Sunium, 
and took up a position in the bay of Salamis. 

The Athenians had now a very difficult part to 
play. The Peloponnesian states were for abandon- 
ing all north of the Isthmus of Corinth, and trusting 
to a wall which they had for some time been 
building across the isthmus to keep back the 
invaders. The Oracle of Delphi, which was always 
under the influence of Sparta, had seemed to 


favour that policy and to predict destruction to 

But Themistocles saw that the final result rested 
with the fleet. The wall across the isthmus would 
be of little service to the Peloponnesian states, if the 
huge flotilla of the king was free to sail round the 
coast and make descents wherever the leaders chose. 
If this fleet, however, was beaten or dispersed the 
land army would before long be crippled. The 
failure of provisions, the terror of being so far from 
home without the means of return afforded by the 
ships, he felt sure, would bring the invasion to an end. 
He therefore resolved to stake all on the navy, leav- 
ing an empty city on which the enemy might wreak 
his wrath ; while he employed the Athenian ships in 
transporting the inhabitants of Athens to the Salami's, 
Trcezen, and other neighbouring towns. The king's 
army duly occupied and destroyed the abandoned 
city, without any resistance except from a handful of 
men on the Acropolis, and his fleet arrived along the 
Attic coast, and could be seen stretching from Pha- 
lerum to Sunium. But this sacrifice would be all in 
vain if Themistocles could not persuade the Greek 
captains to keep the fleet together and engage the 
enemy where the confined space and narrow seas would 
deprive him of the advantage of his superior number 
of vessels. In fact it was by a trick that Themistocles 
finally secured that the battle should be fought where 
it was. At his instigation a secret message was sent 
to the king informing him that the Greek captains 
meant to elude him by sailing along the north of 
Salamis, through the narrow waters between that 


island and the coast of the Megarid. He therefore 
ordered one part of his fleet to be moved up so as to 
block the southern channel and occupy the island of 
Psysttaleia, while another part sailed round the island 
and blocked up the narrows in the west. News of 
this movement of the Persian ships was brought to 
Themistocles, just as a council of Greek captains, in 
which he had in vain urged them to stay and fight, 
had broken up in anger. It was brought by Aristides, 
who had been residing in JEg'ma., under the sentence 
of ostracism which had been passed on him two years 
before. A decree had since been passed recalling 
exiles, and he was on his way home to offer his ser- 
vices once more. As he sailed towards the Piraeus 
he had observed the movement of the ships, which 
he immediately communicated to Themistocles. The 
fact was soon afterwards confirmed by the captain of 
a Tenian ship who had deserted the enemy and came 
to offer his services to the Greeks. The council hastily 
reassembled and could not but consent to fight. 

The battle began early the next morning. It 
cannot be described in any general phrase. It began 
with a charge made by an Athenian upon a 
Phoenician ship. Following this there was a series 
of engagements between single ships, or between a 
single ship and several charging it at the same time, 
till the vast fleet of the enemy, harassed by repeated 
attacks of the Greek craft, which if smaller in size 
were more skilfully worked, and had the advantage 
of being less crowded, became a confused mob of 
vessels which damaged each other as much as they 
were damaged by the Greeks. /Eschylus, who was 


present, will give the liveliest and most correct idea 
of the scene. He represents the messenger in the 
Persic as thus describing the fight : — 

" The hour was come, and straightway ship on ship 
Dashed brazen beak, and first to strike a blow 
Some Grecian craft break all the forward gear 
Of a Phoenician bark. Then here and there 
Right on some foe each drave his armed prow. 
At first the long stream of the Persian host 
Held out and brake not. But when as the swarm 
Of countless ships, cramped in the narrow seas, 
Crashed each on each — entangled in a maze 
Where none could aid his fellow — friend on friend 
Struck with their brazen beaks ; and banks of oars 
Were splintered in the rowers' hands ; and still 
The Grecian ships— watchful to miss no chance — 
Rowed round them and charged : then many a hull 
Keel uppermost went drifting ; the wide sea 
Was hidden with the wreckage and slain men ; 
And all the jutting headlands and the rocks 
Were choked with corpses." 

Xerxes, sitting upon a throne which commanded a 
view of the bay of Salamis, watched with extreme 
agitation the issue of these combats, in nearly all of 
which the Greek ships were successful. The number 
of his ships made the confusion more disastrous 
when they attempted to retreat, for the retiring ships 
frequently crashed in upon those that were still 
rowing up to join in the struggle. The loss of life 
on the Persian side was the greater from the fact 
that they had less facilities than the Greeks for 
escaping to land. The small island of Psysttaleia 
had been occupied by some Persian troops for the 
purpose of securing a refuge for men whose ships 


were disabled or sunk, but Aristides landed on the 
islet and put these men to the sword : while some of 
the disengaged ships of the Greeks were employed in 
pursuing and drowning those of the enemy who tried 
to escape by swimming. Towards evening the bay 
was covered with floating wrecks, and corpses were 
washed ashore all along the coast. The work of 
destruction was only stopped by nightfall. The 
losses on the Greek side were small, while on the 
side of the Persians, though their fleet was by no 
means annihilated, they were very great, and included 
many men of high position, among them a brother 
of the king. 

Next morning the Greeks were prepared to renew 
the fight. Their experience at Artemisium warned 
them not to expect that one day's contest would 
account for the whole or greater part of such an arma- 
ment. But to their surprise no movement was made 
by the enemy and none of their ships hove in sight. 
It soon became evident that most of those that were 
still seaworthy had already started on their homeward 
voyage. The Greeks followed in pursuit, but after 
going as far as the island of Andros without over- 
taking them, the Spartan Eurybiades insisted on 
returning home in spite of the advice of Themistocles, 
who wished to sail to the Hellespont and break down 
the bridge. " They should rather," said Eurybiades, 
" build the Persians a bridge to get them out of 
Europe." Themistocles yielded, but took means to 
have the affair so represented to the king that he 
might suppose the stopping of the pursuit to have 
been his work. 


An important effect of the battle, however, was to 
frighten Xerxes and to make him resolve to return 
home. His chief officers humoured what they knew 
to be their master's intention, and perhaps thought 
that they were really better without him, for his 
courage was questionable and he was at any rate 
excitable and irresolute. Mardonius, therefore, after 
escorting him for some distance on his return, was left 
with the flower of the army to renew the invasion in 
the next year. The king, after much suffering and 
loss, reached the Hellespont, and thence crossed to 
Asia and reached Sardis in safety ; while Artemisia, 
queen of Halicarnassus, who had distinguished herself 
in the battle, and had remained afterwards, was 
entrusted with the royal family and household, whom 
she conveyed safely back to Asia. 

Next year (B.C. 479) the fighting was on land, and 
the result of the invasion was settled by the great 
battle of Plataea. Early in the spring Mardonius, 
who had wintered in Thessaly, marched south and 
again occupied Athens. But he found the country 
ill-suited for cavalry, in which his chief strength lay ; 
and hearing that a strong force had been collected 
in the Peloponnese and was on its way to attack 
him, after some indecision he left Attica for Bceotia. 
There he could count on the assistance of Thebes, 
and could find more suitable ground for his opera- 
tions in the valley of the Asopus. He constructed 
a great camp of refuge on the bank of this river, and 
there awaited the arrival of the Greek forces. The 
Greeks presently appeared on the slopes of Mount 
Cithajron, and for twelve davs the two armies faced 


each other. The Greeks were afraid to descend into 
the valley because of the Persian cavalry, while 
Mardonius could do little but harass them and cut 
off their convoys by daily cavalry excursions. For 
want of water the Greeks had more than once to 
shift their position, gradually edging towards Plataea. 
It was during the last of these moves that the 
engagement was brought on. The Athenians, taking 
the lower road, became engaged with some Theban 
cavalry. The rest of the allies had moved somewhat 
further than was intended, and had taken up a posi- 
tion close to the temple of Here, outside the walls of 
Plataea. But the Spartans and Tegeans, moving 
along upon higher ground, were sighted by Mar- 
donius and forced to give battle near a lonely temple 
of Demeter, about a mile to the east of Plataea. 
That the Spartans had thus been overtaken is 
accounted for partially, according to Herodotus, by 
the obstinacy of a captain named Amompharetos, 
who for many hours refused to join in a retreat. 
But when brought to bay the Spartans justified their 
reputation. For some time the omens remained 
unsatisfactory, and their commander, Pausanias, did 
not venture to charge. The Persians, fixing their 
long wicker shields in the ground, poured in volleys 
of arrows from behind them. After a while Pau- 
sanias is represented as lifting his eyes to the temple 
of Here in the distance and uttering a prayer to the 
goddess. Suddenly the omens became favourable, 
and the Tegeans began the charge. The whole force 
was soon engaged, and the better discipline and 
longer spears of the Greeks presently gave them the 


advantage. The Persians fought valiantly until 
Mardonius fell, with the flower of his troops round 
him. The rest of the panic-stricken crowd fled in 
great confusion to the camp of refuge on the Asopus. 
Here they were followed by the Spartans, who 
attempted to pull down the wooden palisade and 
enter the camp. They were never so good at such 
operations as at fighting in the open, and according 
to Herodotus it was not till the Athenians arrived 
that the camp was taken. Then the unhappy and 
disheartened crowd were slaughtered like sheep, with 
hardly a show of resistance. The only part of the 
Persian army that escaped was a division of forty 
thousand men led by Artabazos. That cautious 
commander seems to have felt a sure foreboding of 
the result of the battle, and had therefore purposely 
loitered behind when Mardonius marched out of 
camp on that fatal morning. He was met by the 
first fugitives from the field, and promptly wheeling 
round, he hastened along the shortest road that led 
to the north. By persuading the Thessalians and 
Macedonians that he was only leading an advanced 
guard of a victorious army, he obtained a safe and 
honourable passage through the country ; and though 
in this forced march he lost many men from disease 
and from the attacks of Thracian tribes, he arrived 
safely with the rest at Byzantium, and thence took 
ship for Asia. 

This was the end of the Persian invasion. The 
grand army was annihilated, and there was no fear 
of further molestation. The Athenians returned to 
their devastated country and dismantled city, and set 


about their task of restoration. The conference once 
more assembled at Corinth and passed sentence on 
the medizing party at Thebes and other cities, and 
the rest, after dividing the spoil and deciding on the 
prize of valour, dispersed to their several homes. 
One question which helped to keep Greece divided 
was thus settled. But the honour of those states 
which had stood for Greek freedom was perpetuated 
by the inscription on a bronze stand of twisted 
serpents, on which once stood a golden tripod, 
placed by Pausanias at Delphi, and still existing at 
Constantinople, to which it was transferred seven 
hundred years later by Constantine the Great. It 
contains the names of thirty-one states, which 
include not only those who fought at Plataea, but 
those who had taken any part in the war by land 
or sea. 

For it was not only continental Greece that was 
saved. The benefit reached the islanders and the 
Greek cities in Asia. Early in the spring of B.C. 479 
the Greek fleet of 1 10 ships mustered at ^Egina, and 
in response to an urgent request from Samos started 
for the coast of Asia. For some time it remained at 
Delos, not venturing for some time to approach a 
district which, though it contained many Greek 
cities, had for twenty years been regarded as under 
the undisputed sway of the great king. The Cyclades 
were indeed securely Greek, and had only suffered a 
passing visitation of the Persian fleet ; but to attack 
the islands off the Asiatic shore, and Asia itself, 
seemed too venturesome. At the same time the 
Persian fleet mustered at Samos, but feared to go 


westward to encounter once more those who had 
beaten them the year before. Therefore, through the 
spring and summer months these two forces, whose 
collision was destined to put a finishing touch to the 
war, remained at a safe distance from each other. 
But the Samians longed to be delivered from the 
presence of the enemy, and again sent messages to 
Leotychides, who was commanding the combined 
fleet at Delos, begging him to come to their aid. 1 
Some time towards the end of August, accordingly, 
the Greek fleet sailed to Samos and anchored off the 
Herajum of the capital city. 

The battle which ensued was fought on land, not 
at sea. The Persian admirals distrusted their power 
to fight the Greek fleet. They had therefore dragged 
their ships on shore at Mykale and entrenched a 
kind of naval camp. Accordingly the Greeks also 
disembarked, and the battle which ensued had 
many features in common with that at Plataea, 
which according to tradition took place on the same 
day. In both there were two distinct struggles, one 
in the open and one in the fortified camp, to which 
the beaten enemy retreated. At Plataea, however, it 
was the Spartans who almost alone won the battle in 
the field. At Mykale the line of their march brought 
them on to the field only in time to strike a last 
blow. It was the Athenians, Corinthians, and Sicyo- 
nians who turned the enemy in the field and were 

' According to the story in Herodotus the envoy of the Samians 
was named Hegesistratos (Army-leader), and Leotychides accepted the 
1 mien of the name. No doubt he had other reasons, but we need not 
wholly reiect the story. Such chance omens had great weight with 
Greeks, and gave confidence to an army. 


the first to storm the camp. As at Platsea, the battle 
— fought like the latter near a temple of Demeter — 
and the fight at the camp resulted in the practical 
annihilation of the Persian army. Even a division 
stationed on the high ground of Mykale as a reserve 
were betrayed and misled by Milesian guides, and 
perished with the rest. A curious story is told by 
Herodotus in regard to this battle. On the morning 
of the day a herald's staff was washed on shore, and 
a report spread of the victory gained at Plata^a. 
Whether historians are mistaken in placing the 
battles on the same day, or whether (as later writers 
assume) the Greek generals deliberately spread the 
report to encourage their men, we cannot tell. In 
times of excitement such rumours will spread among 
men. Whatever their origin, their effect is often 
decisive, and the Greeks naturally attributed them to 
divine influence. 

This victory freed many Ionian states from Persia, 
and made all the other Hellenic states in Asia ready 
to strike for freedom. In order to secure this a 
beginning of what was afterwards a much larger 
league was made by Samos, Chios, and Lesbos, 
whose citizens bound themselves by an oath — con- 
firmed by dropping leaden tablets into the sea — to 
furnish ships and men to resist the Persians. In 
fact, measures were at once begun. The Greek fleet 
sailed to the Chersonese, and freed the cities there, 
expelling the royal garrisons, the last to hold out 
being Sestos, which fell in the course of the winter. 

In the spring of the next year (B.C. 478), the 
Greek fleet again returned to the ./Egean, and in the 


course of that and the following year the confederacy 
was extended to nearly all the islands and Asiatic 
Greek states. It was called the confederacy of 
Delos, because the money of the confederacy was 
to be deposited there, as a neutral place, and its 
object was to keep the Persian fleets from the 
/Egean, to put down piracy, and to set free every 
Greek state. This was to be secured by each state 
— according to its means — agreeing to supply ships, 
or an equivalent in money, for the maintenance of a 
fleet of seventy triremes. This confederacy was a 
league of free states and did not in theory imply 
any loss of independence, nor a special superiority 
of any one state. That it gradually came to be 
regarded as a kind of empire in which Athens 
exercised the supreme authority was partly due to 
accident, partly to natural development. 

The combined fleet sent out in B.C. 478 to con- 
tinue the liberation of Greek states from Persian 
garrisons was under the command of Pausanias of 
Sparta, uncle and guardian of the young king, the 
son of Leonidas. His position was the result of the 
traditional primacy of Sparta. But recent events 
had raised the prestige of Athens, and Aristides, the 
commander of the Athenian squadron, was a man to 
win respect and confidence from all. In his own 
city he had been generally in opposition to the 
forward and astute policy of Themistocles ; but 
though for a time the people preferred his rival, they 
had come back to him, and now trusted him beyond 
all others. His name of "the Just," according to the 
common story, had become so stale that some voted 



for his ostracism because they were tired of hearing it. 
But it was well deserved, and his character now stood 
the Athenians in good stead. The allies soon had 
occasion to show their appreciation of him. Pausanias 
had been extremely elated by his victory at Plataea, 
and now offended the allies by his pride and arrogant 
behaviour, and aroused their suspicions and those 
of his own government by holding communications 
with the Persian court, under pretence of negotiating 
the return of certain Persian prisoners captured in 
the siege of Byzantium. He was therefore recalled, 
and when his successor arrived he found that the 
allies had elected Aristides as commander. The 
Spartan contingent accordingly returned home, and 
the extended confederation was made under Athenian 
influence. Aristides arranged with each state the 
amount of their contribution (<j>6pog) to the common 
fund ; and a kind of presidency was assigned to 
Athens on the proposal of the people of Chios. It 
is true that there was no notion at first of Athens 
exercising control over the other states. But this 
soon came to be practically the fact. It was under- 
stood that each state was to have a democratic 
government more or less after the model of the 
Athenian. Payment of the contribution would at 
times have to be enforced, and Athens would have to 
do this as representing the whole body ; additions to 
the confederacy were usually made by the power or 
influence of Athens. From the first the states were 
unwilling to supply ships, and preferred a money 
payment ; and thus it soon came to be the regular 
thing for Athens to find the seventy ships, while the 


Athenians looked upon it as their right, not only to 
enforce payment, but to prevent any secession from 
the confederacy. Such a case did not arise for ten 
years, when Naxos attempted to break off and was 
forcibly reduced by Athens. But it was inevitable, 
that the relations between Athens and the other 
members should gradually change. That change 
led to the next great disruption in Greece, brought 
about by the Peloponnesian war, and will be 
better considered in connection with it. For the 
present we may conclude our study of the Persian 
wars by considering how far the confederacy put an 
end to them. 

The confederate fleet was engaged more or less 
for eleven years in carrying out the great object of 
freeing all Greek states from the supremacy of the 
Persians. The work was carried on systematically, 
for the most part under the direction of Cimon, son of 
Miltiades. First, the Thraceward cities were freed, 
with the island of Scyros, and the work was com- 
pleted by two great victories, one at the mouth of the 
Eurymedon in Pamphylia over a large Phoenician 
fleet, and another by land near Aspendus (B.C. 466). 
From that time the Persian king seems to have 
agreed not to send ships of war into the ^Egean, and 
not to interfere with Greek towns on the coast. 

By this time or soon afterwards the heroes of the 
second Persian war had disappeared. Pausanias had 
been convicted of treason and put to death (r».c. 471). 
Themistocles had been ostracised in B.C. 471, and 
then being accused of having shared in the treason 
of Pausanias, had fled to Persia (B.C. 466-5), and at 


about the same time Aristides died. A new age was 
beginning with new men. Greece for about a hundred 
years was freed from foreign interference, and free to 
develop in her own way in various parts of the 

For it was not only Greece proper to which relief 
from danger had come at this time. In the West 
a like deliverance had been wrought by Gelo of 
Syracuse, who, about the same time as the battle 
of Salami's (Sept. B.C. 480), won a great victory 
over the Carthaginians at Himera ; and in B.C. 474 his 
successor Hiero conquered the Etruscans at Cumae, 
the rivals of the Carthaginians for naval supremacy 
in the Western Mediterranean. It was in this 
Western or Italian Hellas that, up to this time, the 
new intellectual movement in Greece had been most 
prominent. Pythagoras of Samos {fl. B.C. 530-510) 
had spent most of his later life at Croton, where he 
founded a school ; Xenophanes of Colophon in Sicily 
and Italy was teaching purer doctrines as to the 
gods ; and a school of philosophers arose at Elea or 
Velia in Italy, beginning with Parmenides {fl. B.C. 495) 
and Empedocles {fl. B.C. 455), whose speculations on 
nature, reason, and ethics had an abiding effect on 
Greek thought. 

But the centre of the intellectual as well as the 
political life of Hellas was not to be in these outlying 
parts; for the next hundred years it was to be in 
Central Greece, and, above all, in Athens. The 
achievements and heroes of the Persian wars were 
already finding worthy record in the songs and 
epigrams of Simonides (d. about B.C. 459), while 



Pindar (B.C. 521-442), without distinction of city or 
people, was celebrating all that was vigorous and 
active in his own clay, and all that was noble and 
stirring in the traditions of the past. Simonides was 
an islander, and Pindar was a Boeotian, and the 
most noteworthy of their contemporaries came from 
other islands or states, while Herodotus, the historian 
of the Persian wars, was a native of Caria. But in 
the writings of them all we see emerging the glory 
of Athens, and in the next period it is her poets, 
historians, and orators that have left the most 
enduring monuments of the Greek genius. 


B.C. 466— B.C. 431. 

The success of Athens — The war between Sparta and the Messenian 
helots, B.C. 464-454 — The policy of Pericles — The continental 
empire of Athens — The Five Years 1 Truce with Sparta, and the 
peace of Callias with Persia, B.C. 450-449 — Fall of Athenian land 
supremacy — Btjeotia separates from the Athenian alliance — Euboea 
and Megara revolt, B.C. 446 — The Thirty Years' Peace, B.C. 445 
— Athens and the members of the Delian Confederacy — The adorn- 
ment of Athens under Pericles — Athens becoming the home ot 
literature and the drama — Opposition to Pericles and the new 
culture — Discontent in the confederacy — The affair of Corcyra and 
the beginning of the Peloponnesian war— Revolt of Potidrea — The 
Athenians denounced at Sparta — The Peloponnesian war — General 
outline— First period, B.C. 431-424 — Second period, B.C. 421-415 
— Third and final period, B.C. 415-404. 

THOUGH the intellectual supremacy of Athens lasted 
far into the fourth century B.C., her political supremacy 
fell, never to be restored, with the ruinous disasters 
of the Peloponnesian war. But in this chapter we 
shall be concerned with the happier period of 
her material and artistic success. 

We have seen that the development of the Con- 
federacy of Delos led to the assumption by Athens 



of an almost imperial position. That she should 
have taken the lead in the confederacy was the 
natural result of her great services in the Persian 
war ; and that she was strong enough to seize the 
opportunity was owing, above all, to the brilliant 
abilities of Themistocles, and the high character of 
Aristides. To Themistocles it was chiefly due that 
she had become a strong naval power ; it was due to 
his sagacity and gallantry that she had played so 
important a part in repelling the Persian invasion 
and to his vigorous exertions that, after that event, 
she had become a fortified town, with harbours 
suitable for her expanding trade and growing power. 
It was at his suggestion in B.C. 477 that the city 
walls were hastily constructed in spite of the jealous 
remonstrances of Sparta, and that the Piraeus was 
also encircled for a distance of seven miles, by the 
immense double wall which secured it for more than 
three centuries. And when the policy of Themistocles 
in exacting contributions from the islands, as a 
penalty for their involuntary medizing, seemed 
likely to discredit the state in the eyes of the Greeks, 
it was the moderation and equity of Aristides that 
renewed public confidence in its leadership, and 
caused it to be regarded as the natural head of 
the new confederacy. This was confirmed by the 
voluntary withdrawal of the Spartans, who, content 
with an acknowledged primacy in the Peloponnese 
and in land warfare generally, allowed the maritime 
leadership to fall into the hands of Athens, ap- 
parently at first without foreseeing the consequences. 
When, again, the confederacy, after thirteen years 


of existence, began to show signs of disruption, and 
the Thasians, wishing to break off from it, appealed 
for aid to Sparta (B.C. 465), the Spartans were pre- 
vented from giving it, by a great disaster at home. 
A severe earthquake in that year caused much loss 
of life and damage to property and buildings ; and 
the helots — smarting under years of forced labour 
and oppression — were in rebellion, both in Laconia 
and Messenia. 

Repulsed by King Archidamus in their attempt to 
take Sparta itself the helots collected on Mount Ithome, 
where they maintained themselves for ten years. 
During that time all the energies of Sparta and her 
allies were devoted to the siege. The Athenians, 
therefore, during these years had nothing to fear 
from Spartan interference, though it was well known 
that jealousy of her powers in the yEgean was 
growing rapidly in Sparta. This was emphasised 
by an incident connected with the siege of Ithome. 
Among other requests for aid the Spartan had sent 
one to Athens. Cimon, who had done such brilliant 
service for the Delian confederacy, was head of the 
party at Athens which desired a close alliance with 
Sparta. He persuaded the people to send the aid 
requested under his own leadership. But when he 
arrived, the Spartan generals, who had either not 
approved of the invitation to Athens or had repented 
of it, dismissed him with scant courtesy. The feeling 
aroused at Athens by this rebuff was sufficiently 
violent to cause the ostracism of Cimon (B.C. 461). 

This event began a new era with the advent to 
supreme influence of Pericles, who had for some time 

PERICLES, OB. P..C. 429. 

{British Museum.) 


been Cimon's rival. Pericles was in character and 
tastes the reverse of a demagogue, for he maintained 
a somewhat haughty reserve, mingled little in general 
society, and only spoke in the assembly on important 
occasions. Yet his eloquence was so persuasive that 
for many years it made him almost autocratic. The 
constitutional changes that can be with certainty 
attributed to him are not numerous or striking. 
Yet they are all in the direction of more complete 
democracy. He is said to have been the first to 
propose a small payment for those who sat as jurors 
in law courts, thus making it possible for all classes 
to give their time to this duty. In conjunction with 
Ephialtes, the most advanced demagogue of the time, 
he assisted in reducing the power of the Areopagus 
to that of a court of law for trying certain cases 
of homicide. The council of the Areopagus con- 
sisted of ex-archons. They were members for life, 
and the council had by a kind of prescription exer- 
cised a certain superintendence over magistrates and 
people. We do not know exactly how far it was able 
to withstand votes passed by the assembly, or to oppose 
acts of magistrates, but it certainly possessed some 
powers which were held to be inconsistent with pure 
democracy ; and of these Ephialtes and Pericles 
deprived it. He also established the theoric fund, 
from which the entrance fee to the theatre was to 
be paid for such citizens as applied for it, and the 
enjoyment of the festivals generally to be made 
free to all. 

But the chief interest attaching to him in the story 
of the Greeks is connected with the two objects 


which he set before himself in the earlier period of 
his influence — the formation of a continental empire 
or supremacy for Athens, and the beautifying of the 
city itself, that it might become the chosen home of 
art and literature. In the latter object he succeeded 
beyond all comparison. In the former, after a brief 
success, he failed entirely. His policy in this respect 
brought upon Athens the enmity of Sparta, Corinth, 
and Thebes. It led to almost perpetual war, and to 
a growing discontent among the members of the 
confederacy of Delos, who saw their contributions 
being used for the selfish aggrandisement of one city. 
To it may be traced the train of disasters which 
eventually destroyed the political power and influence 
of Athens in Greece. 

The first step in this attempt was the formation of 
an alliance with Argos, to which the adhesion of 
Megara and Thessaly was presently obtained. The 
primary object was to form a counterpoise to the 
supreme influence of Sparta in the Peloponnese. It 
did not involve immediate war with the Spartans, 
who were too much engaged with the revolted helots 
to resent it actively : but it roused the jealous alarms 
of those powers whose first interest it was to have free 
passage for their ships or an unfettered communi- 
cation with the Peloponnese, — Corinth, Epidauros, 
and ^Egina, who accordingly combined to attack the 
new confederacy (B.C. 458-456). The Athenians had 
some successes in this struggle, especially at sea, 
which enabled them to reduce JEgina. to subjection 
and force it to join the Delian confederacy. On the 
other hand, they were defeated at Tanagra (B.C. 457) 


by a Spartan army, which, on its way home from 
assisting Doris against the Locrians, took the oppor- 
tunity of being in Boeotia to make a demonstration 
against the Attic frontier. But next year an Athe- 
nian army entered Boeotia and won a victory over the 
Boeotians and their allies at CEnophyta, after which 
Boeotia, Phocis, and Opuntian Locris were compelled 
to join the Athenian alliance. The victory of the 
Spartans at Tanagra had led to no important result, 
but it emphasised the fact that the Spartans con- 
sidered themselves as at war with the Athenians, 
and were resolved to withstand the expansion of 
their supremacy. After the end of the struggle with 
their helots, who in B.C. 455 capitulated at Mount 
Ithome on condition of beincr allowed to leave the 
country, the Spartans would be at less disadvantage 
in this controversy. Just about the same time an 
Athenian fleet and army was destroyed in Egypt. 
They had been sent five years before to assist the 
Libyan Inaros to rebel against the Persian king, and 
their destruction was a blow to the prestige of Athens 
as champion of Greece against Persia. Still, on the 
whole, up to B.C. 449 the successes obtained by Athens 
in prosecuting the policy of Pericles, as well as in 
other directions, were considerable. In B.C. 456 
Athens was still further secured by the long walls 
which joined the city to the Piraeus and to Phale- 
rum ; one of her admirals (Tolmides) sailed round 
the Peloponnese, burnt Gytheium, the port of Sparta, 
took Naupactus (where the defeated Messenians were 
now allowed to settle), and caused the western islands 
of Zacynthus and Cephallenia to join the Athenian 


alliance. Next year Pericles himself led an expedition 
in the Corinthian Gulf and secured the adhesion of 

But this was the end of Athenian successes. 
Cimon, after the battle of Tanagra, had been re- 
called, and now induced Athens to agree to a five 
years' truce with Sparta (B.C. 450), and once more 
to devote her energies to further measures against 
Persia ; while at the same time a thirty years' peace 
was effected between Argos and Sparta, which 
practically put an end to the attempt to form a 
powerful counterpoise to Sparta in the Peloponnese. 
A year of successful war with the Persians at Cyprus 
followed (B.C. 449), in the course of which Cimon 
died, and an understanding was come to that the 
Persian fleets were not to sail into the /Egean, and 
that the king was to acknowledge the independence 
of all Hellenic towns. Whether this was secured by 
a formal treaty negotiated by Callias is not certain. 
But for the time it represents the practical state of 
affairs. Callias was a cousin of Aristides, and is 
generally referred to by later writers as having 
negotiated this peace. He at any rate seems to 
have been about this time on some mission to the 
Persian court. But that the king should have 
formally accepted such humiliating terms has been 
thought improbable. 

Immediately afterwards, however, the Athenian 
supremacy on land, which the policy of Pericles had 
secured, began to melt away. In B.C. 448 a quarrel 
as to the management of the temple and Oracle at 
Delphi produced another outbreak of hostilities 


between Sparta and Athens : the former supporting 
the claims of the inhabitants of Delphi to the exclu- 
sive care of the temple, the latter supporting the 
Phocians, who had forcibly asserted their right to 
a share in it. The importance of such a controversy 
is to be measured by the influence of the Oracle on 
Greek politics. Both sides professed a care for the 
impartiality of the Oracle; but in fact both wished 
to secure its support for themselves ; and the special 
influence which Sparta had long had over the 
Delphians the Athenians tried to minimise by 
causing the management of the Oracle to be 
shared by the other Phocians. 

This did not lead to any actual encounter between 
Athenian and Spartan troops ; but in the next year 
(B.C. 447) an attempt of the Athenians to interfere 
in the political troubles of a Boeotian town, Ch.nero- 
neia, brought upon them so serious a defeat on their 
way home at Coroneia, that in order to recover their 
prisoners they surrendered all authority in the other 
towns of Bceotia. In these towns the aristocratic 
party immediately regained power, and renounced 
not only the authority but even the alliance of 
Athens. This was the first break in the continental 
supremacy acquired by Pericles. It was followed in 
the next year by a similar revolt of Megara (so 
important as commanding the road into the Pelopon- 
nese) and of Eubcea, which, though an island, was 
practically a part of Attica. The disadvantage of 
having again incurred the enmity of Sparta was now 
shown by the support at once given to Megara. A 
Spartan army under King Pleistoanax invaded the 


Attic territory ; and though it retired without doing 
any damage, owing, it was believed, to the king 
having been bribed by Pericles, this did not save 
Athenian influence at Megara. The revolt had 
begun by the massacre of an Athenian garrison 
stationed there, and it now definitely broke off from 
the Athenian alliance. Pericles, who had been 
recalled from an expedition against Eubcea by the 
invasion of Pleistoanax, did succeed next year (B.C. 
444) in reducing that island to obedience. But the 
measures of suppression were severe, including the 
removal of all the inhabitants of Histia^a, and all 
the aristocratic party at Chalcis, and the division 
of their lands among a thousand cleruchs, that is, 
Athenian citizens holding allotments of land. Such 
a policy has been tried many times in Ireland, 
but has never been permanently successful. 
Eubcea remained Athenian, but restless and discon- 
tented, and a favourite point of attack for her 
enemies in aftertimes. With this exception the 
land confederacy laboriously contrived by Pericles 
was now broken up. Thessaly had withdrawn some 
years before, though without formal breach ; Argos, 
by making terms with Sparta, had practically 
renounced alliance with Athens ; Megara and 
Bceotia had broken away ; and now in negotiating 
a thirty years' peace with Sparta (B.C. 445) the 
Athenians were obliged to withdraw from Achaia, 
to surrender Nisa^a and Pagse, the two ports of 
Megara, as well as Trcezen in Argolis. In fact, 
Athenian supremacy on the mainland was gone. 
In spite of this failure Pericles was more powerful 


in Athens than ever, and it is a remarkable fact that 
the man who had led the opposition to him since the 
disappearance of Cimon, Thucydides, son of Milesias, 
was ostracised the next year. Thus Pericles remained 
active and powerful. He was promoting colonies at 
Thurii in Italy (B.C. 444) and at Amphipolis in Thrace 
(B.C. 437), the former as a means of securing trade 
with Italy, the latter to maintain Athenian influence 
in the rich gold-mining district of Panga,'us. He 
also interfered with such effect in a quarrel which had 
arisen between Samos and Miletus (B.C. 440) that 
after a nine months' siege the Samians were compelled 
to surrender their free status in the Confederacy of 
Delos, and to become an acknowledged subject of 
Athens, as did Byzantium also, which had joined the 
Samian movement. The only really free allies were 
now the Chians and Lesbians, and the altered position 
of Athens had been emphasised some ten years before 
by the removal of the treasury from Delos to Athens. 
The money, therefore, came more and more to be 
regarded as Athenian revenue, in return for which 
Athens was bound to maintain a fleet in the /Egean, 
but was not bound to render any account of it other- 
wise. The amount of the phoros had steadily in- 
creased, either by the adhesion of new members or by 
the readjustment of the contributions, so that it was 
greater by about a third than the original sum 
obtained. The right of Athens to enforce payment, 
and, if necessary, to place an overseer or resident 
with a garrison in any of the subject states, was 
gradually asserted, and contributed to her imperial 



The policy which thus turned what was meant to 
be a confederacy of free states into a kind of empire 
broke down eventually, but for the present it seemed 
successful and permanent. In another direction 
Pericles successfully carried out his ideal of Athens 
as a centre of art and learning, to which men of letters 
and artists should naturally come. As a first con- 
dition the city was to be supremely beautiful. 
Buildings, accordingly, of unsurpassed grace and 
splendour were either begun or completed under 
his influence. The famous Pheidias [d. about B.C. 
430) acted somewhat in the capacity of Minister 
of Fine Art, and had the general superintendence of 
the works undertaken at his motion. Various archi- 
tects were employed, but Pheidias and his assistants 
added the crown to the glory of the buildings by 
statues, or by the figures in relief in the pediments, 
frieze, and metopes of temples. It was not, indeed, 
at Athens alone that this outburst of building 
occurred, nor was the activity of Pheidias confined 
to Athens. In all parts of Hellas, in Sicily, Southern 
Italy, Corinth, yEgina, and Arcadia, remains of splen- 
did temples still attest the supremacy of Greek 
genius, and it was at Olympia in Elis that one of 
his most famous works, the statue of Zeus, in ivory 
and gold, was completed and dedicated. But the 
Acropolis at Athens possessed the largest number 
of his works. The figures in the pediments of the 
Parthenon and in the frieze and metopes were the 
creation of his own hands or of those of his school 
working under his direction. His, too, was the 
colossal bronze figure of Athena Promachos, holding 


shield and spear, and with its pedestal rising seventy 
feet. The Theseium near the Cerameicus was of 
rather an earlier date, and the Propykta — the stairs 
and entrance gateway on to the Acropolis — was 
begun towards the end of this period (B.C. 437). 
The Erechtheium, the double temple which took 
its name from the mythical King Erechtheus and 
contained many objects of time-honoured sanctity, 
was also begun in this period, but not finished. 
These buildings represent the restoration that 
followed the destruction wrought by the Persians in 
B.C. 481-479. To the same age probably belong the 
Odeum, or Music Hall, with conical roof in imitation 
of the tent of Xerxes, the temple of Athena Nike 
(Nike Apteros), and the Theseium. The auditorium 
of the Dionysian Theatre, hollowed out of the 
southern rock of the Acropolis, went through various 
stages of construction, and probably did not attain 
its ultimate form for more than a hundred years 
later. The vast temple of Olympian Zeus had been 
begun by Peisistratus a century before this period, 
but was on such a scale that the Athenian state was 
never rich enough to complete it. That was reserved 
for the Emperor Hadrian. Besides these buildings 
streets and colonnades (aroai) were gradually filled 
with monuments of various sorts. A whole street, 
for instance, leading from the Dionysian Theatre to 
the town was adorned by monuments raised by men 
who had supplied the choruses for plays which had 
gained a prize. Of these only one is extant of the 
year B.C. 335, in the shape of a circular-domed 
temple with engaged columns of the Corinthian order 


of architecture and made of Pentelic marble, known 
as the choragic monument of Lysicrates. Other 
streets and colonnades were adorned with Herman, 
square blocks or posts of marble, of which the upper 
part represented the head and bust of the god 
Hermes, or of Dionysius, or often two heads looking 
opposite ways. The art of painting contributed 
much in this period to beautifying the city. The 
chief artist who at this time was employed on public 
work at Athens — generally under the direction and 
patronage of Cimon — was Polygnotus of Thasos. 
Paintings of his in Athens — besides many in other 
places — are mentioned in the Stoa poikile, where 
many episodes in Athenian history were represented, 
ending with a vivid presentment of the battle of 
Marathon — in the Theseium, the Propylaea, the 
temple of the Dioscuri, and elsewhere. Parts of the 
same paintings were by his pupil, Mikon. We, of 
course, have not the same means of judging of the 
painter's art as we have of that of the sculptors and 
builders of this age, but it seems that the character- 
istic feature of both branches of art was increased 
power of representing the human form naturally and 
gracefully, whether in repose or movement, free from 
the conventionality and stiffness of more archaic art. 
The difficulty of representing attitudes, dress, hair, 
and eyes had been overcome. Groupings of men and 
horses in procession or contest were produced, and 
created a vivid illusion of life and movement. 
Though Athens excelled other Greek states in the 
number and splendour of these treasures of art, the 
artistic progress was by no means confined to her. 

ABOUT B.C. 380. 

{British A fuse tint.) 


Most of the chief states of Hellas possessed works of 
great beauty. The most perfect, perhaps, of all that 
has been preserved — the Venus of the Louvre — came 
from the island of Melos. The leading artists were 
of various nationality, and were willing to work for 
any state that would employ them. The great 
temples, especially those which were the seats of 
oracles, were filled with the offerings of expectant or 
grateful worshippers, some, no doubt, more remarkable 
for their costliness than their artistic merit, but many 
the work of the greatest artists of the present or the 

Other influences which were modifying the Greek 
character were literature and philosophy. These did 
not find their earliest homes in Athens. The earliest 
poets, as we have seen, were mostly from Asia and 
the islands ; the earliest historians from Miletus ; the 
earliest philosophers from Ionia, Sicily, and Italy. 
Even in the Periclean age the chief seat of mental 
philosophy was Elea in Italy, and the leaders of a 
new physical philosophy came from Thrace or Asia. 
Simonides, the greatest writer of hymns and epigrams, 
was a native of Ceos ; Pindar, the greatest lyric poet, 
was a Bceotian ; and Herodotus, the first great 
writer of literary history, was a native of Halicar- 
nassus, in Caria. Yet this age saw the beginning 
of the movement which was to make Athens 
for a long time the intellectual capital of Greece. 
Though his speculations on the nature and origin 
of the universe alarmed the people and caused his 
expulsion from the city, Anaxagoras spent some 
years in Athens and profoundly affected Pericles 


and his generation. Herodotus visited Athens more 
than once, and spent the last years of his life in 
Thurii, which was in great part an Athenian colony, 
while his successor in the art of history was a pure 
x^thenian, Thucydides, son of Olorus. The three 
great masters of tragedy were also Athenians, and 
in their different ways profoundly influenced the 
Greeks of this age and turned men's eyes still more 
decisively upon Athens. ^Eschylus, the poet of 
lofty religion and heroic passion, died in B.C. 456 ; 
Sophocles, the clear-eyed pourtrayer of the whole 
range of human emotion, lived from B.C. 495 to 
B.C. 405 ; and Euripides, the master of pathos and 
the bold questioner of received beliefs, though fifteen 
years his junior, survived him only by a year. 

These artistic and literary triumphs helped to 
make Athens and the Athenians what they were. 
Constant association with noble words and beautiful 
sights had the same effect on their minds, says Plato, 
as living in a healthy spot has on their bodies. " From 
beautiful works of art there smites upon eyes and 
ears as it were a breeze from a healthful region, 
leading them insensibly from childhood to a con- 
formity and harmony with the good and a love of 
it." This gave a peculiar distinction to that supre- 
macy of Athens in the Hellas of that age, which 
the activity and enterprise of her sons, the wealth 
obtained from her subject allies, and her pre-eminent 
naval power had secured and consolidated. 

Yet there were not wanting signs of opposition to 
Pericles, both at home and among the members of the 
confederacy. His great opponent, Cimon, died in 


B.C. 449, but another leader of the opposition sur- 
vived in Thucydides, son of Milesias, who inveighed 
against the expense incurred by the splendid works 
promoted by Pericles. Though he was got rid of by 
ostracism in 15. C. 445, all opposition was not silenced. 
It showed itself at Athens in attacks upon the friends 
of Pericles. Pheidias was accused both of peculation 
and of impiety. The former he disproved by remov- 
ing the gold from the statue of Zeus, and showing 
that it was of the just weight. On the latter charge 
(founded on the introduction of his own likeness and 
that of Pericles among the warriors fighting the 
Amazons), he was, it seems, convicted and died in 
prison. Anaxagoras again was expelled for impiety, 
while Aspasia (mistress and friend of Pericles) was 
only saved by the utmost exertion of his influence. 

Amongst the allies the causes of discontent were 
accumulating. The transference of the League 
treasury from Delos to Athens, though approved by 
some allies, was offensive to others, and made the im- 
perial pretensions of the Athenians more conspicuous. 
The placing of an Athenian resident (£7rto-K07roc) and 
garrison in some of the states, the insistence upon a 
democratic form of government, the periodical re- 
adjustment of the tribute or phoros, the high-handed 
treatment of Eubcea, ALgina, Samos, and other 
states wishing to break off — all indicated pretensions 
to despotic power, offensive to that passion for local 
autonomy which was the strongest political feeling 
among the Greeks. Pericles had also used more 
widely than ever the system of cleruchies, that is, of 
allotments of lands to Athenian citizens in Eubuea 


and other islands, which was also offensive to the 
ideas and habits of the Greeks, who understood the 
sending of colonists to unoccupied lands, there to 
form a new and independent state ; but neither under- 
stood nor liked the idea of the citizens of one state 
having lands assigned them by their own government 
in the territories of another. The subject allies 
were also annoyed at being obliged to go to Athens 
for the decision of certain suits by the Attic courts, 
which was the cause both of delay and expense. In 
the continent a standing grievance was a decree 
passed, it was alleged, owing to a private grievance 
of Pericles or Aspasia forbidding the people of 
Megara the use of the harbour and markets in 
Attica and its dependencies. 

It only required a spark to set the smouldering 
disloyalty of her allies and the growing envy and 
dislike of her neighbours on fire. This spark was 
supplied by a quarrel with Corinth. In B.C. 435 
one of the ordinary revolutions occurred at Epi- 
damnus (Dyrrachium). The nobles were expelled by 
the popular party, and tried to effect their destruction 
by enlisting neighbouring barbarians. In their terror 
the popular party of Epidamnus applied for help to 
their mother state, Corcyra, and were refused. They 
then applied to Corinth, the mother city of Corcyra. 
The Corinthians sent a fleet which was defeated off 
Actium by the Corcyreans, who then forced Epidam- 
nus to surrender. The Corinthians resolved to renew 
the war and spent nearly two years in making 
preparations. Meanwhile both they and the Corcy- 
reans applied to Athens for aid. Under the influence 


of Pericles the Athenians decided on an alliance with 
Corcyra, principally because of the advantage it pre- 
sented for ships sailing to Italy or Sicily, on which 
the eyes of the Athenians had long been fixed, as 
offering great opportunities for trade and settlements 
for their citizens. Accordingly, when the war between 
Corinth and Corcyra was renewed in B.C. 433, the 
Corinthians were prevented from taking advantage 
of a naval victory off the Sybota Islands by an 
Athenian squadron. 

The Corinthians, therefore, were anxious to find 
some means of retaliating upon Athens, and this was 
afforded them in the following year (B.C. 432), by the 
revolt of Potidaea, which was a colony of their own, 
from the Athenian alliance. The revolt had been 
originally instigated by the king of Macedonia, 
who wished to get control over the Chalcidian 
peninsula. The people of Potidaea applied to Corinth 
for help, which was readily given, and still more 
effective aid promised. But the Athenians were 
too quick for them, and the town was soon com- 
pletely blockaded by a strong Athenian force of 
men and ships, though it managed to hold out till the 
winter of B.C. 430. 

The Corinthians now sent envoys to Sparta 
denouncing the ambition and tyranny of Athens. 
The Spartans summoned a conference of their allies, 
and after long deliberation war with Athens was 
resolved upon. It was not begun at once. Em- 
bassies went backwards and forwards, and various 
demands were made, partly with a view of putting 
Athens in the wrong, partly in order to gain time 



for preparation. The final demand that Athens 
should acknowledge the independence of all her 
allies was practically a declaration of war. The 
most eager for this had been the Megarians, owing to 
their exclusion from the Athenian markets ; the 
Corinthians, owing to affairs of Corcyra and Potidaea ; 
and the ^Eginetans, because they had been forced 
to join the confederacy of Delos and had been 
deprived of their autonomy. But the final cause 
which induced the Spartans to proclaim war was 
really dread of Athenian expansion. Athens had 
more power, than, according to Greek ideas, it was 
safe for any one state to possess. 

The war which followed is called the Pelopon- 
nesian war, because Sparta dominated the Pelopon- 
nese, which, with the exception of Argolis and 
Achaia, was mainly on her side ; but in fact nearly 
all continental Greece was hostile to Athens, who 
relied on her maritime and Asiatic allies. It was, 
therefore, a contest for the most part between a land 
and a sea power. It was also a contest between two 
political ideals — oligarchy and democracy — and to a 
certain extent racial, between Dorian and Ionian. 
It lasted with a brief interval till B.C. 404, and its 
result was the destruction of Athens as an imperial 
state, and almost as a political force at all in Greece. 
But the old ideal of perfectly autonomous states 
was not restored. Spartans took the place of 
Athenians with still greater odium and less success. 
The only one to profit was the king of Persia, whose 
satraps again interfered in Hellenic politics and 
reimposed his yoke upon the Asiatic Greeks. The 


ten years of Theban supremacy only succeeded 
in breaking up such union as existed, and Greece was 
left helpless and divided, to fall under the control of 
the kings of Macedonia. The war, therefore, has 
with some justice been called " The Suicide of 

It may be divided into three periods. First, from 
B.C. 431 to B.C. 424, in which Athens was, on the 
whole, eminently successful till the defeat of an 
Athenian army at Delium, balancing the disaster of 
the previous year sustained by the Spartans at 
Sphacteria (B.C. 425), induced the two chief com- 
batants to make a truce for a year. Then followed a 
kind of interlude, B.C. 423-421, when there was neither 
open war nor real peace, for in B.C. 422 the war went 
on in Thrace, though there were no operations in 
Greece. In B.C., 421 Nicias, who had always been on 
the side of caution, negotiated a fifty years' peace. 

Secondly, B.C. 421-415. During the next six 
years Athens and Sparta were at peace, but the 
allies of neither were satisfied. New combinations 
were made by various states and met by counter- 
combinations which eventually produced a war 
between Sparta and Argos, in which Athenian 
troops took part with Argos, though the peace 
with Sparta nominally remained. The prominent 
Athenian statesman in this period is Alcibiades. 

Thirdly, B.C. 415-404. This period opens with 
nominal peace in Greece. The Athenians had the 
year before suppressed and cruelly punished an 
attempted revolt in Melos, and her supremacy in 
the yEgean seemed safe. Her financial position had 


also much improved. Nicias and the conservative 
part of the citizens were for peace and moderate 
counsels ; but Alcibiades instigated the people to 
return to an old dream of an empire in the West. 
The Greek cities in Sicily and Italy were to be made 
subject, and perhaps even the kingdom of Carthage. 
With that they would be able to revenge themselves 
on the Peloponnese, and once more be supreme in 
Greece. A quarrel between two Sicilian cities gave 
a pretext for the fatal expedition to Syracuse. The 
Spartans again took sides against Athens. Attica 
was not only again invaded, but permanently occupied. 
And though in the years which followed the destruc- 
tion of their armament at Syracuse, B.C. 413 to B.C. 
404, they made a gallant struggle against the revolt 
which Sparta stirred up amongst their subject allies, 
one by one they were all wrested from her — even 
Oropus and Eubcea ; and when in B.C. 405 her last 
fleet was destroyed by Lysander at Aegospotami, there 
only remained a few months before Athens herself 
was compelled to surrender and allow her fortifications 
to be dismantled. 

It is to be remembered that this period of constant 
war and fierce controversy is also the great period of 
Athenian literature. Sophocles and Euripides were 
exhibiting their plays while Athenian fleets were 
conquering or being conquered. Aristophanes found 
the themes for his most brilliant comedies in the 
politicians of the day or the burning question of 
peace or war. Socrates was wandering through the 
streets, not uninterested in the events of the time, and 
being called upon more than once to take his share 




( Capitoline Museum . ) 


in military disaster or political peril, and yet never 
resting in that constant criticism of life, thought, and 
morals which laid the foundation of so much of the 
philosophy of the future. Thucydides, again, was 
actually engaged in the wars, and suffered, as he 
believed unjustly, from the rancour of the dema- 
gogues ; but he, too, worked on through the time of 
storm and stress to build up the "eternal possession " 
which he has bequeathed to posterity. It was when the 
days of strife were over and Athens had found peace 
without honour that the intellectual sceptre departed 
from her and found a place for a time in the Greek 
city of Alexander on the Nile. Peace may nurture 
genius, but does not seem to produce it. Nine of 
the ten orators might, perhaps, have lived in any age 
of Athenian history ; but it required a time of fierce 
strife and desperate struggle for freedom to make a 



The beginning of the Peloponnesian wars, B.C. 431 — Revolt of Lesbos 
— Disorders in Corcyra and Athenian interference in Sicily — 
Demosthenes in /Etolia — Capture of Pylus, B.C. 425 — Battle of 
Delium, B.C. 424 — The campaign of Brasidas in the North and the 
gradual failure of Athens — The truce of B.C. 423 — The Peace of 
Nicias, B.C. 421 — Greek politics from B.C. 421 to B.C. 45 — Fresh 
provocations to Sparta — The Sicilian Expedition, B.C. 415 — 
Alleged profanation of the mysteries — Mutilation of the Hermie — 
The difficulties of the expedition — Siege of Syracuse begun B.C. 
414 — The Spartans intervene — Failure of the re-inforced Athenian 
army and navy — Final defeat of the Athenians and death of Nicias 
and Demosthenes — Effect on the prestige and authority of Athens — 
The Athenians resist the dissolution of their confederacy — The 
operations of the restored Alcibiades — Cyrus and Lysander — The 
battle of Notium, B.C. 407 — Battle ot Arginusoe, B.C. 406, and of 
.Egospotami, B.C. 405 — The occupation of Athens and the 
destruction of her fortifications and constitution — The Thirty — 
Thrasybulus restores the democracy, B.C. 405-4 — The Sophists 
in Athens — Condemnation and death of Socrates, B.C. 399 — Sparta 
supreme in Greece, B.C. 403-371 — Sparta's efforts to free Asiatic 
Greeks after the death of Cyrus — Leagues against Sparta, 
B.C. 396-390 — Peace of Antalcidas, B.C. 387 — Discredit of the 
Spartans — New Athenian confederacy, B.C. 378-355 — Battle of 
Leuctra, and beginning of Theban hegemony, B.C. 371 — Rise of 
the Macedonian kingdom — Reign of Philip II. from B.C. 359 to 
the peace of Philocrates, B.C. 346 — Active encroachments of 


Philip II. — Opposition to Philip organised by Demosthenes, but 
ended by the battle of Chaeroneia, B.C. 338 Macedonian 
supremacy secured. 

The war began with an attack upon Platsea by 
the Thcbans B.C. 431. The three hundred Thebans 
who surprised the town were overpowered and killed. 
But the Plataeans knew that this would lead to 
their being besieged, and obtained a reinforcement 
for their garrison from Athens. The siege went on 
till n. C. 427. That was one point of permanent war; 
but the Peloponnesian forces did not join the Thebans 
in the siege till the beginning of B.C. 429. Mean- 
while Athens was engaged at two points, first in the 
siege of Potidaea, which did not surrender till the 
autumn of B.C. 430 ; and secondly, in sustaining 
invasions of their own territory. These invasions 
were regularly repeated in B.C. 431, 430, 428, 427. 
In P. C. 429 and 426 they were omitted, in the former, 
owing to the Spartans being engaged at Plataea, 
in the latter owing to earthquakes. The policy 
recommended by Pericles in regard to these invasions 
was for the people to remove into the city with all 
they could bring with them and leave the invaders 
to do their worst with the country. Meanwhile the 
Athenian fleets were to harry the coasts of the 
Peloponnese, and carry the arms of Athens into 
Western Greece and the Islands of the Ionian Sea. 
Thus in B.C. 431 Cephallenia was reduced, and in 
15. c. 429 Acarnania was successfully defended against 
a combined attack of Peloponnesians and Ambra- 
ciots. In this same year Phormio twice defeated 
the Peloponnesian fleet, which in the second battle 


was commanded by Brasidas, one of the most able 
commanders produced by Sparta in the early years 
of the war, who failed, however, in an attack on the 
Piraeus. These years were a time of great distress 
in Athens owing to an outbreak of plague, which 
caused the death of many thousands, and demoralised 
the survivors by the constant peril, and the relaxation 
of all the usual restraints which it produced. The 
people turned fiercely upon Pericles, whom they 
regarded as the origin of their sufferings, both as 
having caused the war and induced them to crowd 
the city with countrymen and cattle. He was fined 
and deposed from his office of Strategus. And 
though the people shortly repented, and finding that 
they could not do without him, reinstated him in 
power, within a twelvemonth he himself fell a victim 
to the pestilence (B.C. 429). 

The next two years (B.C. 428-427) were marked by 
the revolt of Lesbos, which compelled the Athenians 
to maintain a blockade of Mitylene through the 
winter, and involved them in heavy expenses. The 
Peloponnesians, however, failed to take advantage of 
this difficulty in time. Before their fleet reached 
Lesbos in the following spring an uprising of the 
democratic party in Mitylene had compelled a 
surrender of the town to the Athenians. The 
Athenians were particularly exasperated by this 
outbreak at Lesbos. Up to this time their fleets 
had been employed, on the whole with success, in 
the West. This revolt forced them to maintain the 
conflict in two directions at once. They therefore 
determined to make a signal example, and a decree 


was actually passed for the execution of all the 
inhabitants of Mitylene. Next day, indeed, the 
people repented, and the decree was reversed, in 
spite of the strenuous opposition of Cleon, a 
demagogue who had risen into power since the 
death of Pericles. Still, about a thousand of the 
men who had been ringleaders in the revolt were 
executed, and their lands divided among Athenian 

Freed from this danger, the Athenian fleets were 
again employed in the west to support the democrats 
of Corcyra, who, after violent civil wars and terrible 
massacres, had expelled the aristocrats. Here, as at 
Lesbos, the dilatoriness or cowardice of the Spartan 
commander gave the Athenians the advantage. But 
though the aristocrats were compelled to leave the 
island, some of them shortly afterwards returned, 
and the civil disorders thus renewed prevented 
Corcyra from counting for anything henceforth in 
the war. The Athenians, however, still had their 
eyes directed westward, and this year saw the first 
of these interferences in the affairs of Sicily, which 
were several times repeated with the vain hope of 
establishing an Athenian supremacy there, and gain- 
ing a new vantage-ground for attacks upon the 
Peloponnese. The Greek cities in Sicily, like those 
in other parts, were perpetually at feud, Ionian 
against Dorian, and there would seldom be wanting 
some pretext for Athenian intervention. 

But it was necessary first to secure Western 
Greece, and in B.C. 426 Demosthenes led an army 
into iCtolia. But the ^Etolians, though living in 


scattered villages without walled towns, were an 
active and gallant people, and knowing every part 
of the country, harassed and defeated Demosthenes, 
and followed up their success by an attack upon 
Naupactus, in which the Athenians had settled the 
vanquished Messenians, valuing their possession of it 
highly as commanding the entrance to the gulf of 
Corinth. But a peace formed between Acarnania 
and Ambracia at the close of this year put an end to 
these operations in the West, and though the Athenians 
continued to send ships and men to Sicily on various 
pretexts, nothing of importance occurred there, and 
a general pacification effected between the Sicilian 
cities in B.C. 424 closed that field for Athenian 
energies also. 

The interest of the struggle in B.C. 425 and 424 is 
rather in Greece itself. In B.C. 425 the accidental 
occupation of Pylos, in Messenia, by Demosthenes, 
who was on his way to Sicily with general orders to 
operate on the coast of the Peloponnese in the course 
of his voyage in any way that seemed good to him, 
caused great alarm at Sparta. A party of Spartan 
soldiers were placed on Sphacteria, a small island 
opposite Pylos, and stretching across the bay, who in 
their turn were blockaded by the Athenian fleet, and 
after holding out for some time were captured by 
Cieon, who, accusing the generals of backwardness, was 
sent personally to take the command. A Messenian 
garrison was then placed in Pylos to carry on a 
constant warfare of plunder on Lacedaemonian ter- 
ritory. The Spartans were now eager for peace and 
the recovery of their men who were prisoners at 

The Sieges of 


C h a n n eh 

a. Prehistoric Walt round the top of Mt. Ettas. 

b. The hollow 

c. Point at which the Messenians landed 
to climb into the hollow 

d. Probable landing place of the Athenians 

II 'alker GrBontaU sc. 

Reproduced from Mr. HilVs "Illustrations of School Classics" 
[By fa-mission of Messrs. Macmillan & Co.) 


Athens. But the Athenians were too triumphant to 
listen, and the unexpected success of Cleon, who had, 
as he promised, taken the Spartans in Sphacteria 
within twenty clays, had given him great influence in 
the assembly, and induced the people to follow his 
policy, which was to continue the war at all hazards, 
rather than that of the cautious and respectable 
Nicias, who was for making peace. They won a 
victory over the Corinthians in the autumn of B.C. 
425 ; in the next year they occupied the island of 
Cythera, off the southern shore of Lacedaemonia, 
as well as other places on the mainland ; they seized 
Nisaea, the harbour-town of Megara ; and finally 
they were inspired with hopes of securing Bceotia, 
where a democratic party, envious of Thebes, was 
inviting their presence. A double invasion was 
planned, but owing to some mistake, the two armies 
failed to unite, and the Athenians sustained a severe 
defeat at Delium. 

The same year also the war was transferred by 
Brasidas to the Thraceward towns. Among other 
places he successfully attacked Amphipolis, which the 
historian Thucydides, commanding a small fleet at 
Thasus, failed to relieve. The Athenians were par- 
ticularly sensitive as to the loss of these towns owing 
to their corn and timber trade with them, and the 
countries round the Black Sea, which necessitated 
making voyages along the northern shores. 

Accordingly in B.C. 423 they concluded a year's 
truce with a view of a more permanent settlement. 
Nevertheless the year was not free from war. A 
revolt of two cities in the Chalcidian peninsula, 


Mende and Scione, gave Brasidas an opportunity of 
seizing them, on the pretext that the revolt preceded 
the truce ; and the expedition sent by the Athenians 
to recover them was therefore in fact, if not in theory, 
a kind of war against Spartan forces. At the 
expiration of the truce (B.C. 422) an expedition was 
sent to recover Amphipolis and Torone, and the war 
went on in those parts with disastrous results to the 
Athenians, who were defeated in a battle near 
Amphipolis, in which both Brasidas and Cleon fell. 

The winter was employed in negotiations for 
peace. One difficulty was, that though both Athens 
and Sparta, from mutual disappointment at the result 
of the war, were anxious to make terms, the chief 
allies of Sparta — Bceotia, Corinth, Elis Megara — were 
unwilling to join. Another difficulty was, that though 
one of the terms of the peace was a mutual restitution 
of conquered states, this restitution was not always 
possible. Amphipolis refused to be handed back, 
and the Thebans declined to restore Platsea ; con- 
sequently, though the Athenians made a separate 
peace for forty years with Sparta, and handed back 
the Sphacterian prisoners, they retained Nissea (the 
port of Megara) and Pylos. 

The interval of professed peace, therefore, did not 
promise well for a lasting settlement. In fact, 
intrigues were at once set on foot to establish a new 
confederacy independent of both Athens and Sparta, 
of which Argos was to be the head. It was joined 
by Corinth, Mantinea (in Arcadia), Elis, and the 
towns of the Chalcidic peninsula. The Boeotians 
did not join, and shortly afterwards made a separate 


treaty with Sparta. But in B.C. 420 Alcibiades, a 
young and reckless but very able statesman, who 
now first appears in public business, induced the 
Athenians to join the Argive confederacy, which, 
thus strengthened, began warlike operations against 
other towns in the Peloponnese to compel their 
adherence ; while the Athenians placed escaped 
helots and Messenians in Pylos with a view of 
fomenting fresh plundering expeditions upon 
Spartan territory (B.C. 419). The Spartans could 
not view these measures with indifference. They 
declared war on Argos (B.C. 418) and defeated the 
allied army at Mantinea. Not only was Mantinea 
compelled to submit, but a revolution took place at 
Argos itself, which put the oligarchical party in 
power, which at once made a treaty with Sparta. 
It is true that next year (B.C. 417) a counter revolu- 
tion restored the democrats, who rejoined Athens, 
but the battle of Mantinea practically put an end to 
efficient opposition to Sparta in the Peloponnese and 
broke up the conspiracy. 

Athens was still nominally at peace with Sparta. 
But a series of offensive acts on her part led to the 
open renunciation of that peace. Pylos was a stand- 
ing ground of quarrel. Athenian troops had fought 
at Mantinea on the side of Argos ; in B.C. 416 an 
Athenian fleet blockaded the island of Melos (a 
colony of Sparta) to compel its Dorian inhabitants 
to be contributors to the Athenian confederacy. At 
the beginning of the war they had contributed to the 
Spartan war fund though professing to take neither 
side. This had brought upon them an attack from 



Athens in B.C. 426, and though Thucydides says that 
they stoutly refused to yield, their name appears on 
the list of the Athenian confederacy of the next year 
(B.C. 425) for fifteen talents. This is a large sum 
(more like a fine than an ordinary contribution), and it 
was perhaps their omitting to pay it that brought the 
Athenian fleet upon them again in B.C. 416. At any 
rate, the Spartans failed to assist them, and after 
several months blockade of their chief city they were 
forced to surrender. The Athenians put all men of 
military age to death, and sold the women and 
children into slavery, dividing their lands among 
seven hundred of their own settlers. 

Encouraged by the indifference shown by the 
Spartans to this cruel deed and their failure to 
stir up Perdiccas of Macedonia and the Chalicidians, 
the Athenians began schemes of greater importance. 
As before, their eyes turned to the West ; and ad- 
vantage of a quarrel between two Sicilian cities, 
Egesta and Selinus, was taken to aim at the 
conquest of all Sicily. Ambassadors were sent to 
Egesta to find out whether that city was wealthy and 
likely to contribute what it had promised when 
applying for aid. In the spring of B.C. 415 they 
returned with a favourable report, having been 
themselves deceived by a show of wealth. 1 Nicias 
was, as usual, cautious, and tried to dissuade the 
people from such an enterprise ; but Alcibiades 

1 The story is that they were constantly entertained at banquets 
at which there was always a splendid display of gold and silver 
plate, but that they did not notice that it was the same plate passed 
on from house to house. 

Photo] [Alinari. 

ALCIBIADES, C. B.C. 450-404. 

{Uffizi Gallery, Florence.) 


carried the day against him without difficulty, 
because he was for the moment appealing to what 
had long been a cherished hope of the people. 
Nicias was appointed general with two others — 
Alcibiades and Lamachus. The former, brilliant, 
versatile, and unscrupulous, had always been his 
political opponent and must have been a most un- 
welcome colleague. The latter was a good soldier 
and honest man, but from lack of position and 
wealth could exercise little influence. Nicias tried 
in vain to damp the popular ardour by the mag- 
nitude of his demands as to ships, men, and money. 
But everything was voted without a murmur, so 
great was the wealth expected from the spoil or 
trade of the island. 

The aristocratic party, who supported Nicias, then 
tried to discredit Alcibiades in other ways. Rumours 
were set afloat of daring acts of profanity committed 
by him and some other of his friends and boon com- 
panions. They were alleged to have repeatedly 
performed the ceremonies of the initiation into the 
Eleusinian mysteries in private houses. During 
many years of the war the plain lying between 
the city and Eleusis had been so open to attacks 
of the enemy that the usual procession to Eleusis 
had been impossible. It had been, therefore, alto- 
gether omitted, and the worshippers, if they went 
at all, went by sea. This may have suggested the 
performance of these rites by Alcibiades and his 
friends. Still the publication of them to the un- 
initiated was regarded as a profanation which 
would place the perpetrators under the curse of 


the Eumolpidae, or priests of Demeter, only to be 
expiated by their death. It would certainly unfit 
them for any public employment. 

But just before the sailing of the expedition 
another outrage in the city roused still more both 
the religious and political fears of the people. 
The Hermae — stone pillars surmounted by busts 
of Hermes — stood in great numbers in the streets 
and colonnades. These were nearly all found to 
have been mutilated in one night. In addition to 
the shock given to the religious ideas of the people 
by this piece of vandalism, there was the uneasy 
feeling with which any concerted and secret 
action was always regarded, as indicating revolu- 
tionary plots, almost certain to be for the establish- 
ment of a tyranny. The peace party pointed to 
Alcibiades as the ringleader in the mischief, though 
not long afterwards Andocides confessed his guilt 
and named his accomplices. It seems unlikely that 
as he was starting on an expedition which he 
ardently desired, and from which he expected 
such great advantages, he should have so wantonly 
done what he must have known would thwart his 
own plans. It is more probable that it was a mere 
freak of dissipation, or deliberately contrived by his 
enemies to discredit him. He urged that he should 
be put on his trial at once, and not sent out in com- 
mand while labouring under such a suspicion. The 
people, however, were too eager for the expedition, and 
too much convinced of his military abilities to grant 
the request. His enemies supported this vote, for 
they thought that they could attack him with a better 




{Lateran Museum.) 


hope of success when the people were not under 
the spell of his eloquence and charm. The fleet, 
therefore, left the Piraeus after solemn prayer and 
libation, and amidst the cheers and encouragement 
of the people who crowded down to the har- 
bour. The armament was on an unusual scale 
of magnificence. There were a hundred Athenian 
triremes, with fifty from Lesbos and Chos, four 
thousand Athenian hoplites with three hundred 
cavalry, besides many more from the allied states. 
The crews were picked men, and the troops selected 
with special care, while great sums of money had 
been lavished on the equipment and ornamentation 
of the ships as well as of the men. The fleet 
was accompanied by a large number of transports 
and private trading vessels whose owners hoped to 
find opportunities for profitable traffic in Sicily. The 
whole armament made for Corcyra, where large forces 
of the allies of Athens were ordered to meet them. 

But from the first moment that this great arma- 
ment left Corcyra for Iapygia, in the south of Italy, 
one ominous difficulty after another seemed to 
predict failure. The cities on the Italian coast till 
they reached Rhegium refused to furnish supplies ; 
and at Rhegium, though allowed to purchase what 
they needed, they could get no intelligence that 
any Sicilian cities were prepared to welcome them, 
nor could the three commanders agree on the plan 
of operations. Nicias was for attempting nothing 
beyond the professed object of the expedition — 
the settlement of the quarrel between Egesta 
and Selinus. Lamachus and Alcibiades were for 


carrying out its real object — the conquest of Sicily. 
But even they differed as to the means. Lamachus 
was for sailing direct to Syracuse, Alcibiades for 
first making an attempt to win over other Sicilian 
towns and native Sicels to their side. But when 
the plan of Alcibiades was finally accepted and 
the armament moved to Catana — which had been 
induced almost by accident to admit them — it was 
met by a trireme sent by the Athenians to recall 
Alcibiades to stand his trial for impiety. His enemies 
had succeeded in his absence in stirring up the 
popular feeling against him, and thus the ablest 
of the generals was lost to the expedition, and a 
most dangerous enemy was secured for Athens. 
For Alcibiades sailing, with others recalled with him, 
on his own private trireme (which his family had 
for some time past maintained) eluded his escort 
at Thurii. Waiting till it had departed for home in 
despair of finding him, he crossed to the Peloponnese. 
There he instigated the Spartans to take up the 
cause of the Syracusans, and especially to effect a 
diversion by permanently occupying a post in Attica. 
Meanwhile at Catana nothing was done for some 
months. When at last the Syracusan forces were 
tempted towards Catana, and the Athenian com- 
manders taking advantage of this movement made 
a descent upon Syracuse by sea, though they 
defeated a Syracusan army, they found it too late 
in the year to begin a regular siege. 

Next spring (B.C. 414), however, active operations 
were begun. The Athenians landed at Thapsus, 
surprised the high ground above Syracuse, called 


Epipolre, and began constructing lines intended to 
extend from shore to shore, while their ships block- 
aded the harbour. For a brief space all seemed 
going well ; the Syracusans were frequently repulsed 
in sallies against these lines (though Lamachus 
was killed in one of them) ; and in their despair 
they deposed their generals, Hermocrates and his 
colleagues, and began treating with Nicias for a 
surrender. The rapid reversal of these fair pros- 
pects is one of the most dramatic incidents in 
military history, and may be directly traced to 
Alcibiades. It was by his advice that the Spartans 
resolved upon taking an active part in a war, which 
in itself did not concern them or justify a breach 
of the fifty years' peace. That justification was, 
however, easily found in a plundering expedition on 
the part of the Athenians on the coast of Laconia. 
Gylippus was despatched from Sparta with a small 
force and arrived at Tarentum when the fortunes 
of the Athenians seemed at their highest point. 
He might even now have been intercepted, but 
Nicias regarded the smallness of his force with 
contempt, and made no effort to prevent his sailing 
through the straits. He therefore coasted along 
the northern shore of Sicily and landed at Himera. 
Here he collected large numbers both of Greeks 
and native Sicels and marched to Syracuse, pene- 
trating the Athenian lines at a point where they 
were incomplete and weakly guarded. His arrival 
turned the scale completely. A cross-wall was built 
which for ever prevented the completion of the 
circumvallation by the besiegers, and Nicias for 


the rest of the season had to remain on the de- 
fensive. In the winter he sent home a despatch 
detailing the difficulties of his position, the deteriora- 
tion of his ships, and the diminution of his forces 
by losses on the field, sickness, and desertion. He 
begged to be recalled, as being broken in health, 
and he demanded at any rate to be reinforced by 
a second armament on the same scale as that 
originally sent. The people refused to relieve him 
of his command, but voted a large reinforcement, 
which sailed in the spring of B.C. 413, under Demos- 
thenes and Eurymedon. But it was too late. Nicias 
had lost Epipolae : he was encamped on the low 
ground south of the town open to attacks from 
the Syracusan cavalry at the Olympieium, though 
protected on the seaboard by his ships. The 
Athenians still dominated the Great Harbour ; but 
Gylippus used his successes on land to encourage 
the Syracusans to send their ships out of their own 
inner harbour to try conclusions with the Athenian 
fleet. At first they met with reverses, but these 
were made up for by the capture of Athenian 
stores and magazines on Plemmyrium, the headland 
forming the southern shore of the Great Harbour. 
They were also strongly reinforced by troops from 
most of the Sicilian towns. Lastly, just before the 
arrival of the relieving squadron from Athens the 
Syracusans, who had now learnt to remedy defects 
in their ships, gained an important victory at sea. 
Nicias was therefore in a very dangerous position. 
For a brief period the spirits of the Athenians 
were revived by the arrival of their new armament. 


But everything went wrong. An attempt to recover 
Epipolae was repulsed with great loss, and when 
Demosthenes and Eurymedon therefore wished to 
take the whole force home, Nicias refused on the 
ground that the people would resent it. Yet they 
would probably have prevailed had it not been for an 
eclipse of the moon, after which the seers forbade 
any movement for a month, and Nicias was firm in 
refusing to disobey the warning. The result was 
that the Syracusans again attacked them by land 
and sea. The land attack was repulsed, but the 
defeat of the fleet was so complete that all idea of 
any further offensive movement had to be abandoned. 
The best they could hope would be to escape in 
safety. But the Syracusans blocked the mouth of 
the Great Harbour, and therefore escape could only 
be effected by a naval success in the harbour itself. 
Eurymedon had fallen in the previous engage- 
ment, but Demosthenes now took command at sea, 
while Nicias, who was displaying great energy, 
remained with the land forces, to protect those crews 
which were forced ashore. The fight was long and 
desperate, but in the end the Athenian ships were 
disastrously defeated ; such of them as were not 
captured or sunk were run ashore near the Athenian 
camp into which the crews fled for safety. 

Nothing now remained but to retreat by land into 
the centre of the island where friendly Sicels might 
aid or protect them. But even now their evil destiny 
pursued them. Instead of retreating at once, as was 
the first impulse of Nicias and Demosthenes, they 
were induced by a cunning message of Hermocrates, 


purporting to come from friends within the city, to 
delay the start to the second night. This gave the 
enemy time to block the roads, and make preparation 
for harassing their march. Accordingly, on the next 
day both Demosthenes and Nicias, who were each 
commanding a column, were overtaken and com- 
pelled to surrender. In spite of the protest of 
Gylippus, both were put to the sword ; while the 
captured Athenians were sold as slaves or confined 
in the quarries near Syracuse, where large numbers 
perished. In grateful contrast to this cruelty stories 
were told of some who gained the favour of their 
masters and ultimately their freedom by being able 
to recite passages from the plays of Euripides. 
Seldom had the destruction of so large and splendid 
a force been so complete. The disaster affected a 
very large part of Greece. Thucydides gives us the 
names of about thirty-eight states from which a 
certain number of citizens were serving in the 
Athenian force. They include towns or peoples of 
all parts of Hellas, Sicily, Italy, Ionia, the JEgean 
islands and Asiatic Greece. 

The defeat of this great armament, therefore, must 
have caused mourning all over Greece, and a keen 
sense of the weakened prestige of Athens ; which 
was farther hampered by the permanent occupation 
of Decelea, only about fifteen miles from the city, by 
a Peloponnesian force commanded by a Spartan king. 
Accordingly there was a widely-spread inclination 
to revolt among the subject allies. The Persian 
satraps in Asia Minor, Pharnabazus and Tissa- 
phernes, saw their opportunity of reasserting their 


master's authority over the Greek cities in Asia, and 
his influence in Greece generally. Very early in the 
Peloponnesian war there had been communications 
between the Spartans and the Persian court, and 
now (B.C. 412-41 1) a regular agreement was come to 
with Tissaphernes. At first he demanded that the 
king should recover all that his predecessors had 
held, but as this might have been interpreted to 
include the islands, and perhaps all Greece as far 
south as Boeotia, the Spartans recoiled from such 
a betrayal, but finally agreed that he should be 
acknowledged as lord over all the cities in Asia. A 
large number of these cities had already been instigated 
to break off from the Athenian confederacy as well 
as the islands of Euboea, Lesbos, Chios, and Rhodes ; 
while the border town of Oropus was seized by the 
Boeotians. It was, in fact, a breaking up of the 
confederacy which the Spartans were prepared to 
purchase at the price of the enslavement of the Greek 
towns in Asia and something more. In return for 
this Tissaphernes was to supply money for the pay 
of Peloponnesian soldiers and sailors. 

The Athenians, however, were not prepared to 
submit, in spite of their recent loss and the perpetual 
irritation and distress caused by the occupation of 
Decelea. By immense exertions they got a fleet of 
more than a hundred triremes afloat ; and as the 
democrats in Samos just then revolted and expelled 
the oligarchs that island became more closely allied 
than ever to Athens, and was the headquarters of 
its fleet throughout this period. Detachments of this 
fleet reduced several of the revolting states on the 


coast of Asia, and besieged the island of Chios. The 
situation was further complicated by the action of 
Alcibiades, who, finding his position in Sparta 
wearisome or dangerous, joined Tissaphernes, and 
persuaded him for a time to be somewhat less liberal 
in his support of the Spartans, arguing that it was 
not for the king's interest that any one Greek state 
should be too powerful. Taking advantage of the 
influence which he had or professed to have over 
Tissaphernes, he now negotiated with the commanders 
of the Athenian fleet at Samos for his own restora- 
tion. The majority of the naval commanders sent 
Peisander to Athens to effect a revolution in the 
democratical constitution and to secure the recall of 
Alcibiades. By the help of Antiphon, Phrynichus, 
Theramenes, the revolution, already prepared by 
numerous assassinations under the auspices of the 
political clubs, was brought about. The chief power 
was put in the hands of a council of 400 (instead 
of the council of 500), and the right of voting in 
the Ecclesia was to be confined to 5,000 selected 
persons. This constitution lasted a very short time, 
partly because the Spartans were not ready to make 
terms with the new government (for they expected 
to subdue Athens shortly by their own superior 
power), and partly because the revolutionaries were 
divided among themselves. Theramenes, especially, 
from vaccillation or moderation (according as we 
interpret his character with favour or dislike *) 

1 Theramenes, who now first comes into notice, got the nickname of 
"the buskin" {cothurnus) which would fit either foot. The truer 
explanation is perhaps that he sincerely entertained a philosophical 
ideal which suited neither extreme. 


wished to make the assembly of 5,000 " best men " a 
reality, while others only wished to keep power in 
their own hands. Moreover, the fleet at Samos, now 
under the command of Thrasyllus and Thrasybulus 
— strong democrats — declined to recognise the new 
government. Lastly, it lacked the merit of success. 
The Spartans secured the revolt of Euboea and 
defeated an Athenian force sent to recover it ; and 
the mortification and terror of the Athenian people 
were increased by seeing a new fort being erected at 
the entrance of the harbour of the Piraeus, which 
they believed to be intended to overawe them 
and protect Peloponnesian invaders. A counter 
revolution, therefore, quickly took place, and the 
restored ecclesia voted the recall of Alcibiades (as 
the commanders at Samos wished) and even elected 
him Strategus. 

For more than two years (B.C. 410-408) the genius 
of Alcibiades seemed to promise a return of the 
old supremacy of Athens. The Spartan fleet leaving 
Miletus and southern Asia Minor, from mistrust of 
Tissaphernes, removed towards the end of B.C. 411 
to the Hellespont, where their admiral Dercylidas 
hoped to be more loyally supported by the Satrap of 
Phrygia, Pharnabazus. There it was twice defeated off 
Cynossema (B.C. 41 1) by Thrasyllus and Thrasybulus, 
and practically annihilated next year (B.C. 410) off 
Cyzicus by Alcibiades. As a result the Athenians once 
more occupied Byzantium and Chalcedon, and were 
again masters of the Northern ALgean Sea (B.C. 408). 

After a pause of a year in any warlike movements 
of importance, during which Alcibiades visited 


Athens and had a great reception, operations 
began again in the South. A new element in the 
struggle now appeared. Cyrus, the younger son of 
Darius II. — of whose abilities and character 
Xenophon has left us a very attractive picture — 
came down to the coast with powers over the whole 
of Lower Asia, superior to the two satraps. The 
Lacedaemonian admiral was now Lysander, a man 
of low origin but possessed of remarkable talents as 
a statesman, diplomatist, and soldier. An intimate 
friendship sprang up between him and Cyrus, partly 
owing to his personal qualities, partly because the 
prince had made up his mind to support Sparta as 
being most inclined to acknowledge the Persian rule 
of the Asiatic Greek states. From that time there 
was renewed activity in the Spartan fleet, materially 
promoted by the regular payment of the men which 
the liberality of Cyrus made possible. In the next 
campaign, which was thus rendered inevitable, the 
good fortune of the last three years once more failed 
the Athenians. Their defeat off Notium was brought 
about by the second in command (Antiochus) pro- 
voking the fleet of Lysander, then at Ephesus, to 
give him battle. Alcibiades, who had gone to con- 
sult Thrasybulus, then besieging Phocaea, had 
expressly forbidden him to fight ; but he had to 
bear the wrath of the people caused by the dis- 
obedience and incompetence of his subordinate. He 
was deposed from his command and retired to a 
castle which he owned on the Chersonese. The 
command was transferred to a board often generals, 
one of whom was Conon. 


Nothing went right with the Athenian fleet after 
this. Though the Spartan fleet was also under a com- 
mander much inferior to Lysander, it defeated Conon, 
shut him up in Mitylene, and seized Mythymna. 
The other Athenian generals did indeed win a naval 
victory at Arginusae (B.C. 406), but it was at a con- 
siderable sacrifice of life, made more signal by their 
failure to rescue a number of men who were cling- 
ing to wrecked vessels after the battle. It seems 
that a storm made it impossible, but the generals 
were denounced at home, recalled, and six of them 
were tried and put to death. It was on this occasion 
that Socrates, who happened to be one of the pry- 
tanes, or presidents of the ecclesia, showed his 
courage and respect for law by refusing to put the 
resolution, condemning the generals, to the vote, 
because it was illegal to condemn men together by 
a single decree. Next year (B.C. 405), Lysander again 
took the command of the Peloponnesian fleet. 1 He 
once more removed the scene of the war to the 
point at which Athens was most sensitive — the 
Hellespont. He seized Lampsacus, and, waiting his 
opportunity, sailed across to attack the Athenian 
fleet on the opposite coast at ^Egospotami, when 
the men were mostly on shore at breakfast, 
destroyed their ships, and captured and put to 
death about 3,000 men. The sacred ship, the 
paralus, escaped and took the news to Athens, 
while Conon, with eight ships made his way to 

1 It was illegal at Sparta for a man to be twice elected naval com- 
mander (navarcAus) ; he was therefore appointed "chief secretary" 
[epistoleus), but practically with chief authority. 


Cyprus and remained under the protection of King 
Evagoras. 1 

The Athenians were now helpless. They had no 
more ships of war, and on land they were still 
effectually kept in check by the Spartan garrison at 
Decelea. Lysander was so sure of his prey that he 
made no haste to sail to the Piraeus. He busied 
himself for some months in taking over towns once 
in alliance with or subject to Athens, expelling the 
Athenian garrisons, but granting them safe-conducts 
to Athens, that the number of mouths in the doomed 
city might be increased. He was not opposed any- 
where, the whole Athenian empire crumbled away 
as if by magic, and none of the allies maintained their 
allegiance but Samos. The Spartan army at Decelea 
was reinforced under the second King Pausanias, and 
the Academy, just outside the walls, was occupied. 
The city was to be starved out. Theramenes — as 
likely to be a persona grata at Sparta — was com- 
missioned to go to Lysander and make terms, but 
remained nearly three months away ; and when he 
returned the people were ready to submit to anything. 
Some of the allies, such as the Corinthians and 
Thebans, wished to destroy Athens altogether. But 
the Spartans, to their honour, rejected the proposal ; 
and at length peace was granted on condition of 

1 Philocles, the commander, was put to death on the ground of 
having executed certain Corinthians and Andrians by hurling them 
from a cliff, and a proposal to cut off the right hands of all prisoners 
was alleged as an excuse for putting the others to death. In fact the 
war had lasted so long that exasperation was blinding both sides to 
Hellenic principles. 


Athens renouncing all authority over other states, pos- 
sessing only twelve ships of war, recalling oligarchical 
exiles, pulling down the long walls, and dismantling 
the Piraeus (Spring of B.C. 404). Lysander sailed into 
the Piraeus and superintended the destruction of 
the long walls and the fortifications of the harbour. 
He then withdrew, leaving the oligarchical party — 
now in the ascendent — to arrange a revolution in the 

After a short time he returned, and under his 
influence and in obedience to a threatening speech, 
the Assembly voted the appointment of Thirty Com- 
missioners, who were to draw up a new constitution 
and meanwhile to conduct the government. The 
city was then relieved, not only of the presence of 
Lysander, but of the army of occupation at Decelea 
and in the Academy. Athens was left free from 
actual foreign control, but a shadow of its former self. 
The Thirty governed tyrannically, filled their coffers 
with the confiscated property of their opponents, 
whom they either drove into exile or put to death, 
and in a few months had rendered themselves hateful 
to all classes. Theramenes, who was one of them, 
incurred the enmity of his colleagues by counselling 
moderation and opposing the proposition that the 
New Assembly should consist of a definite number 
(3,000). He argued that it should be composed of all 
citizens of good character, and that the arbitrary 
execution of respectable men should cease. Critias, 
however, who took the lead among the Thirty, had 
no difficulty in getting rid of him. In a meeting of 
the Council he struck his name off the list of the 


privileged citizens, and delivered him to the Eleven 
for execution. After his death the tyranny went on 
for some months unchecked. However, the numerous 
citizens living in exile found safe refuge in Thebes 
and other towns, which from jealousy of Sparta, 
refused to deliver them up. It was from them that 
relief at length came. 

In September (B.C. 404) Thrasybulus, living in exile 
at Thebes, suddenly left that city with about seventy 
followers and seized Phyle, a fortress commanding a 
pass over Mount Parnes. Thither flocked refugees 
from all quarters. An attack made upon them by 
the forces of the Thirty failed ; and though the 
Thirty were able to seize Eleusis, Thrasybulus re- 
taliated by occupying the peninsula of the Piraeus, 
finally fixing his headquarters at Munychia. In the 
battle which followed with the army of the Thirty he 
was completely victorious. Critias himself fell, as 
well as another of the Thirty, and a conference being 
held between the leading men of either side, it was 
agreed to depose the Thirty and appoint a Com- 
mission of Ten to treat with Thrasybulus. The Ten, 
however, proved unwilling to agree to a complete 
restoration of the constitution and appealed for help 
to Sparta. The Spartan king Pausanias was sent 
with an army, and Lysander was appointed harmost 
(Spartan governor) of Athens. But, as often happened 
in these Spartan expeditions, internal jealousy pre- 
vented effective action. Pausanias did not wish to 
see Lysander too powerful, and after making a show 
of assaulting the Piraeus he gave a hint that he was 
willing to receive ambassadors. The matter was 


referred to the Spartan government at home and an 
amnesty and general restitution of property was 
agreed upon. The old constitution seems to have at 
once revived, and, as it was now about June (B.C. 403), 
the Boule of 500 and the Archons were appointed in 
the usual way — the Archon Eponymous being 
Euclides. All legal decisions made before the year 
of "anarchy " (B.C. 404-3) were to be held good, but 
a commission was appointed to redraft the laws 
founded on those of Solon, and this code was to be 
henceforth authoritative. The amnesty could be 
pleaded in bar of all proceedings against any citizen 
for what had been done in the year of anarchy. 

The end of the Peloponnesian war and the year 
of anarchy that followed it saw other changes in 
Athens. The national character seems little to have 
changed. There still remained more than half a 
century during which the Athenians showed wonder- 
ful energy and a vigorous national life. But in some 
respects it coincided with the end of other things, 
especially in art and literature. Her three great 
tragedians were dead and had no worthy successors. 
Aristophanes was still alive and was still exhibiting 
comedies, but they lacked the old boldness in criti- 
cising public men and measures. As an historian 
Xenophon was a poor successor of Thucydides, 
though probably in general culture he was his 
superior. The Sophists, or Lecturers, who had visited 
Athens from time to time, had principally promoted 
the study of oratory or literature. They seldom pro- 
fessed to teach physical science, and in their instruc- 
tions Ethics were generally treated as a branch of 


Politics — the art of social life. The leading names 
among them were Protagoras of Abdera, Gorgias of 
Leontini, Polus of Agrigentum, Hippias of Elis, Pro- 
dicus of Ceos. The apologue called " The Choice of 
Heracles," by the last named, has been preserved by 
Xenophon, and has been copied and translated every- 
where. It is a plea for the strenuous life of virtue 
against the charms of pleasure and self-indulgence. 
The Sophists all differed in their views and methods 
and ought to be judged separately. They have, how- 
ever, frequently been spoken of as a class, as if the 
tendency of their teaching was identical. Perhaps 
this view is not confined to moderns. The ordinary 
Athenian was apt to have the same idea of them, 
just as in our day men of business dismiss certain 
views and opinions with the contemptuous epithet of 
"academic." That this was in part at any rate the 
case is evident from the fact that when Aristophanes 
wished to attack them he selected as their represen- 
tative the well-known figure of Socrates. In the 
" Clouds " there are attributed to Socrates many 
opinions and studies from which he was specially 
averse. The Satire is not even a parody of his 
teaching; it is quite beside the mark. But it showed 
what a certain sort of Athenians in the professional 
class thought of what we should call the " higher 
education." And the fate that shortly afterwards 
befel Socrates is connected with the popular view as 
to the evil tendency of sophistic teaching. 

Socrates was born about B.C. 469, was brought up 
as a sculptor, and duly served his turn in the army — 
at Potidaea, Delium, and Amphipolis. But he very 


SOCRATES, B.C. 469-399. 

(Vatican Museum.) 



early abandoned his profession and avoided as far as 
he could any more active participation in public 
business. He devoted himself to philosophy and 
applied himself to listen to everybody of eminence 
who might assist his studies. He soon gave up 
physics — as leading to nothing and being beyond 
human powers — and devoted his whole mind to ethics 
and mental philosophy. He spent his time in the 
gymnasia — especially the Lyceum — and was ever 
ready to discuss questions on these subjects with 
any and everybody, especially with the young men, 
who, having learnt what was to be learnt at school, 
were seeking more advanced training. He charged 
no fee, and his conversation and company were open 
to all. It would be impossible in a short space to 
discuss the positive side of his teaching, so far as 
there was any. But a few words may show why he 
was likely to make enemies. He did not lecture but 
conversed, and his method was to apply his elenchos 
or refutation in such a way as to show his hearers 
that they did not know what they thought they knew. 
Thus men would glibly use the words "justice," 
" right and wrong," " holiness," " virtue," " wisdom," 
and the like. He would show them that they had no 
clear idea of what these words indicated, and therefore 
on what principles they were conducting their life or 
choosing one line of action and rejecting another. 
The same process would show men that their views 
and conceptions of the gods were hopelessly vague 
and uncertain. Such demonstrations could easily be 
represented as sapping the foundations of religion and 
morality. The prejudice which was roused by them 


was confirmed by the fact that some of the youths who 
frequented his society had turned out bad and mis- 
chievous citizens — such as Alcibiades the traitor, and 
Critias the most abhorred of the Thirty. After the 
restoration of B.C. 403 there was perhaps a more than 
usually strong feeling that such teaching had been bad 
for the youths, and might in part be accountable for 
the disasters of recent years. Yet Socrates had always 
been tolerated. When he refused to put the vote for 
the condemnation of the six generals after Arginusae, 
though howled at and threatened, he had departed 
unharmed. When during the tyranny of the Thirty 
he had refused to take part in one of their illegal 
arrests he had received no further harm than 
threatening words. His face and figure, his endless 
talk, his constant humiliation of wordy and preten- 
tious people, had provoked nothing more alarming 
than a laugh or a petulant retort. But, suddenly in 
B.C. 399, three men were found — representing the 
classes which had felt most annoyance at his argu- 
ments and methods — Meletus, a poet, Lycon, an 
orator, and Anytus, a man of business, determined to 
prosecute. It was difficult to name the charge. It 
had to be classed under the general word aSt/ca — " he 
wrongs" — i.e., the people, by disbelieving the gods 
of the country and introducing new gods, and by 
corrupting the youths. Socrates was condemned by 
a small majority, and his prosecutors assessed the 
punishment at death. Socrates had the right to 
make a counter assessment, and would probably have 
been able to name a fine sufficiently large to be 
accepted. But he all along took the line that instead 


of wronging the people he had been their greatest 
benefactor, and if he deserved anything it was to be 
maintained free of cost in the Prytaneum — the 
highest honour bestowed by the state — as a mis- 
sionary of virtue, and as having been sent by Provi- 
dence expressly to rouse and stimulate the Athenians. 
The jurors regarded this as defiance and a contempt 
of their court. They accordingly voted for the pro- 
secutor's proposal of death. Execution usually 
followed the next day, but the festival of Delos 
was then in progress, and it was the custom that no 
execution should take place till the return of the 
sacred galley sent by Athens to the island on such 
occasions. Socrates therefore had another month of 
life, during which his escape might easily have been 
secured by wealthy friends. But he refused to break 
the law by quitting the prison, and remained to die. 
This is one of those crimes of which popular govern- 
ments seem little less capable than tyrannies. It can 
be explained but not defended. Among other things 
it was useless. Socrates had done his work, and had 
given the impetus which made the philosophy of 
which Athens was the home for the next century. 
He recognised this himself, and knew that the time 
had come to depart, before age and decrepitude had 
weakened his influence. He had no fear for the 
future — it was to be either a dreamless sleep or the 
companionship of the just. The five hundred Athe- 
nian patriots who formed the jury have to share with 
Pontius Pilate the eternity of ill-fame gained by their 
spirited "vindication of the law." 

After the disasters of B.C. 305-303 Athens stands 


aside for a time. We have now to contemplate a 
Spartan Greece — a Greece, that is, in which any 
combined action that might be undertaken must be 
approved and led by the Spartans, and in which 
Sparta will claim the right of placing a resident or 
harmost and a garrison in any of the states formerly 
belonging to the Athenian alliance in which it seemed 
necessary. These residents speedily became more 
odious than the Athenian officers had ever been, 
and before many years had passed revolts were 
frequent and often successful. 

But the prime duty of a state occupying the 
position now held by Sparta was to champion 
Greek freedom against the unceasing intrigues of 
the Persian satraps. Her ultimate failure to do 
this was consummated by the Peace of Antalcidas 
(B.C. 387), which surrendered to the king all that it 
had been the object of the hundred years' opposition 
to prevent. 

At first Sparta seemed inclined to undertake the 
duty with some vigour, and with the freer hand 
because of the disappearance of her great supporter 
and patron, Cyrus, in B.C. 401. That prince in the 
previous year had collected a large army, including 
a contingent of 10,000 Greeks, under the pretext of 
crushing the predatory Pisidians, but really to depose 
his brother Artaxerxes, who had just succeeded his 
father, Darius II. All went well on the march, and 
he found his brother in force near Cunaxa, on the 
Euphrates, some fifty miles north of Babylon. But 
though in the battle which followed the Greek con- 
tingent won a victory, Cyrus himself was killed, and 


the whole enterprise came to nothing. The romantic 
story of the retreat of the Greeks to the shores of the 
Euxine has been immortalised by Xenophon. They 
reached the sea at Trapezus, and thence made their 
way, some by land and some by sea, to Byzantium, 
and on to the Thracian Chersonese. 

But they found that the effects of the expedition 
of Cyrus were not over with their escape. The king 
had been warned of the intentions of Cyrus by 
Tissaphernes, and rewarded him with the satrapies 
once held by that prince. Tissaphernes came down 
with the determination to reduce the Greek cities to 
obedience. They in their terror had begged help from 
Sparta, and Thimbron had been despatched with five 
thousand men to their aid. He was joined by the 
greater part of the Greeks, who had survived the 
expedition of Cyrus, and having made some progress 
in his opposition to Tissaphernes, then marched south 
to Ephesus. There he was superseded by Dercylidas 
(B.C. 399), who in that and the following year gained 
further successes in ^Eolis, Bithynia, and the Thracian 
Chersonese. In B.C. 397 he returned to Caria, but 
there arranged an armistice with the Persian satraps. 
These operations were continued on a larger scale in 
B.C. 396 to B.C. 394 by the Spartan king, Agesilaus, 
who succeeded to the throne in B.C. 398. He overran 
Lydia and Phrygia, and in B.C. 395, inflicted so severe 
a defeat upon the Persian cavalry in Lydia that 
Tissaphernes was recalled and Tithraustes sent to take 
over his satrapy. But this was the end of the effec- 
tive service of Agesilaus. Tithraustes outwitted him 
in diplomacy, and having induced him to sign an 


armistice for six months, took advantage of the inter- 
val to send an agent into Greece to bribe Thebes, 
Corinth, and Argos to stir up war against Sparta. 

Then followed a period of distraction in Greece full 
of petty wars, of combinations formed and dissolved, 
and of internal dissensions in many of the chief towns. 
The only gainer was Persia, whose alliance was sought 
by various parties alternately. Thus in B.C. 395 a dis- 
pute as to frontiers broke out between the Phocians 
and Locrians, and Sparta and Thebes took opposite 
sides. This cost Lysander his life, who was defeated 
and killed near Haliartus, in Bceotia. Next year a 
combined army of Thebans, Athenians, Corinthians, 
and Argives was defeated by the Spartans near 
Corinth. Then the Persian Pharnabazus resolved 
to crush Sparta, and, collecting a fleet, put Conon 
— still living in Cyprus — at the head of the Greek 
part of it. The Spartan fleet having been defeated 
and almost annihilated off Cnidus (B.C. 394), Conon, 
after expelling the Spartan harmosts from the 
islands, next year (B.C. 393), sailed to Athens, and 
restored the long walls and the fortifications of the 
Piraeus. The victory led to a renewal of the com- 
bination against Sparta, and the hasty recall of 
Agesilaus from Asia. He defeated the allies at 
Coroneia, but the war went on with Corinth as the 
base. The Corinthians themselves, however, were 
fiercely divided, and the party in favour of Sparta 
admitted Agesilaus into the space between the long 
walls connecting Corinth and Lechseum, where he 
again defeated the allied forces (B.C. 392), and in 
the course of the next year established Spartan's 


supremacy in Corinth and Northern Peloponnesus 
generally. Then came a check to the success of 
Sparta by the military genius of the Athenian 
Iphicrates, who, with a force specially trained and 
more lightly armed than the regular hoplites, cut 
to pieces a company or mora of Spartans (B.C. 390). 

This made a great impression in Greece generally, 
and seems to have influenced the Spartans once more 
to obtain the support of Persia. There had been 
meanwhile various operations at sea, in which suc- 
cesses had been gained on both sides, without any 
very decisive result, as far north as Byzantium and 
as far south as Rhodes. But when in B.C. 387 the 
Spartan ambassador, Antalcidas, returned from the 
Persian court with a royal decree announcing that 
he would war against any state that attempted to 
violate two conditions — (1) the possession by the 
king of the Greek states in Asia, (2) the autonomy of 
all other states (except. Lemnos, Imbros, and Scyros, 
which were to belong to Athens) — the Greeks in 
general were obliged to submit, because with the 
assistance of the Persians, Antalcidas had collected 
a fleet of eighty vessels, and no state was strong 
enough to resist him. 

The Spartan supremacy had thus a new lease 
of life. But in the sixteen years which followed 
(B.C. 387-371) a series of violent and oppressive 
proceedings on the part of the Spartan government 
and officers gave rise to renewed war, which made 
the king's rescript a dead letter, except that the loss 
of freedom on the part of the Asiatic cities remained. 
But there was only the briefest interval of peace 



among the Greeks themselves. In B.C. 385, on the 
flimsiest pretext of disaffection, the Spartans besieged 
Mantinea, and forced its inhabitants to dismantle their 
town and live in open villages. Three years later 
(B.C. 382) they attacked Olynthus, whose neighbours 
were jealous of its growing power and appealed for 
help to Sparta. Olynthus was not reduced till B.C. 379, 
after the Spartans had suffered more than one disaster. 
In the same year Phlius, in the north of Argolis, was 
also reduced and forced to submit to its oligarchical 
rulers. But a less justifiable proceeding than any of 
these took place in B.C. 381, when Phcebidas, while 
on the march to reinforce the army attacking 
Olynthus, was admitted by treachery into the 
Kadmeia or citadel of Thebes and held it by force. 
Though the Spartan government disavowed re- 
sponsibility for his action, the garrison remained in 
occupation till B.C. 378. 

But though this year witnessed the success of the 
Spartans at Olynthus and Phlius, it really proved the 
turning-point in the struggle and the beginning of the 
fall of the Spartan supremacy. For in the winter of 
B.C. 379-8 a number of young Thebans (among whom 
was Pelopidas) suddenly assaulted and killed the ring- 
leaders of the Spartan party in Thebes, got possession 
of the city, and next day stormed the Kadmeia and 
forced the Spartan garrison to surrender on condition 
of being allowed to depart uninjured. 

This was followed by many years of war between 
Sparta and Thebes, in which the Spartans three times 
invaded Theban territory with small success. But the 
chief importance of the war was that it began with an 


alliance between Athens and Thebes against Sparta, 
in consequence of which Athens once more gained a 
leading position on the sea and was able again to form 
a confederacy (B.C. 37S). The professed object of this 
new league (the terms of which are preserved on an 
existing stele) was to compel "the Lacedaemonians 
to allow the allies to be autonomous and to enjoy 
their own territory in safety." It was to be open to 
all states and islands not subject to the Persian king 
— a provision which avoided opening the question of 
the Asiatic cities, whose status had been fixed by the 
peace of Antalcidas. Each state was to maintain 
whatever constitution it pleased, without admitting 
an Athenian garrison, or resident, or paying a pJwros 
or tax. The Athenians undertook in case of all states 
joining the confederacy to surrender all cleruchies held 
by Athenian citizens or by the state, and to settle 
no more clcruchs in them. There was to be a board of 
commissioners (cruveSjOot) to decide all cases of dispute 
under this clause. The Athenians further covenanted 
to give aid by land or sea to any of the allies who 
were attacked. The confederate states were to pay a 
contribution to a common fund, as appears from other 
inscriptions, though it is not mentioned in this stele. 
It was to be ca^ed a syntaxis instead of the now 
invidious phoros. The alliance seems first to have 
consisted of Chios, Tenedos, Mitylene and Mythymna 
in Lesbos, Byzantium and Rhodes, but it was quickly 
joined by others until it reached the number of about 
seventy. The adhesion of Thebes marked its antago- 
nism to Sparta, and that of Acarnania, Cephallenia, 
and Zakynthus three years later secured Athenian 


supremacy in the Ionian sea. The renewed activity 
of Athens brought out a new generation of generals 
and admirals as able and successful as those who 
served her in the last century. Thus Chabrias won a 
victory over a fleet of sixty Lacedaemonian ships off 
Naxos, and relieved the coasts and seas of Attica 
(B.C. 376) ; Timotheos, son of Conon, defeated another 
Lacedaemonian fleet at Corcyra, thus enabling the 
Corcyraeans to join the alliance (B.C. 375) ; and two 
years later (B.C. 375) Iphicrates again relieved Corcyra 
from the attack of another powerful Spartan fleet. 
The only success won by Sparta in this period was 
the thwarting of an invasion of Phocis by the Thebans 
in B.C. 374. Weariness of such continuous and futile 
warfare now began to be generally felt. A peace, 
which only lasted a few months, had been patched up 
between Athens and Sparta in B.C. 374, but three 
years later a general pacification was arranged, 
Sparta covenanting to withdraw her harmosts from 
the cities, and to disband her land and sea forces, 
and, in fact, to abandon her position of militant 
supremacy (B.C. 371). 

This, therefore, was the end of the Spartan hege- 
mony, but it did not bring actual and complete peace 
to Greece. It was the beginning of a new period, in 
which Thebes took her place with evil results to the 
unity and prosperity of Greece. In the pacification 
of B.C. 371 the Thebans took no share, for they 
claimed to sign on behalf of all the Boeotian cities, 
which was against the spirit of the agreement. 
Accordingly the Spartan king, Cleombrotus, invaded 
Boeotia. but was defeated at Leuctra by the Theban 


Epaminondas, who had taken the lead during the 
congress in supporting the claims of Thebes. He 
was a man of unusually high character, and had 
many of the most important qualifications of a 
great general. He had introduced the system of j 
the phalanx, and had brought the army of Thebes 
to a high state of perfection. Still, he had to 
direct or carry out the policy of his country, which 
was narrow and mischievous, though some of the 
worst acts of the Thebans during their supremacy 
were done against his will. His policy was to carry 
the war into the enemy's country, to set up in the 
Peloponnese a power great enough to counter- 
balance that of Sparta. Fifty- five years earlier this 
had been the policy of Alcibiades, who looked to 
Argos as best supplying what was needed. Now Epa- 
minondas, or his agents selected Arcadia. Mantineia 
was restored, the Arcadian cities were induced to 
form a league, and a new town, to be called Mega- 
clopolis, was founded, to be the capital and seat of 
government. This measure alarmed both Sparta and 
Athens. We therefore have a new combination — 
these two ancient enemies joining to resist the 
ambition of Thebes. The war went on. Epami- 
nondas four times invaded the Peloponnese — once 
almost surprising Sparta itself. The quarrel was 
complicated by another between the Arcadians and 
Elis, and by the Corinthians and Phliasians making 
terms with Thebes, and trying to put force upon 
Sparta to acknowledge the independence of Messenia 
(B.C. 366). Both sides also endeavoured to enlist the 
support of the king of Persia. But the Thebans 


attempted too much. At one time they thought of 
wresting the naval supremacy from Athens, and Epa- 
minondas, who went on a kind of tentative expedition 
to Byzantium, was said to have threatened to remove 
the ornaments of the Acropolis to Thebes. They 
also undertook to champion the Thessalians against 
the tyranny of Alexander of Pherae. Pelopidas, 
the bosom friend of Epaminondas, who had taken 
the lead in expelling the Spartan garrison from the 
Kadmeia, was three times sent into Thessaly, and 
on the third occasion was defeated and killed 
(B.C. 363). They had, moreover, inspired the Arca- 
dians with so much confidence in themselves that 
some of their cities began to be restive under the 
Theban supremacy. The schism was increased by 
a quarrel over the management of Olympia and 
the use to be made of its treasures. In this dispute 
some appealed to Athens and Sparta and others to 
Thebes. Mantineia was the leading state on the 
Spartan side, and the primary object of Epami- 
nondas in his fourth invasion of the Peloponnese 
was to reduce that town. After only just failing to 
surprise Sparta he gave the allied troops battle at 
Mantineia, where he won a great victory but lost 
his own life (B.C. 362). Peace was then made 
between all the warring states, from which, however, 
Sparta stood aloof. There was no more fighting 
for four years, but the general result of the ten years 
of Theban supremacy was weakness and disunion 
everywhere, the isolation of Sparta, and a renewed 
bitterness of feeling between Thebes and Athens, 
which were still the two strongest states. 


But while Greece was thus squandering her strength 
in unprofitable quarrels, a power was growing up 
close by destined to absorb her and permanently 
destroy independent political life in her divided 
states. This was Macedonia. The dynasty ruling 
in Macedonia claimed to be of Hellenic origin, 
descended from the Temenidae of Argos, and its 
sovereigns from time to time emphasised this claim 
by dreaming the right to enter as competitors at 
Olympia. The country originally included under the 
name was an inland district between the range of 
Mount Pindus and the river Axius, with a capital at 
Pella. The aim of its kings had ever been to extend 
their dominions to the sea, and enlarge and 
strengthen their frontiers by conquering the sur- 
rounding tribes of barbarians. At the time of the 
Persian invasion the Macedonian king was obliged 
to submit to the superior powers of the invaders, 
but Alexander, " the Philhellene," who was reigning 
in B.C. 480, was eager for the success of the Greeks, 
and, according to Herodotus, risked his life to warn 
them of the coming attack at Plataea. Later kings, 
however, had become unfriendly to Athens, because 
they found her inclined to resist the extension of 
their empire along the shores of the Thermaic gulf. 
The Athenian influence in the Chalcidic peninsula 
was a continual bar to their southward extension, 
and Athenian jealousy was easily roused at any idea 
of their advance eastwards towards the Strymon. 

In B.C. 359 the eighteenth king of the dynasty, 
Philip II., son of Amyntas, took possession of the 
throne in place of an infant nephew. He was 


twenty-three years old, and had spent some years at 
Thebes in the house of the father of Epaminondas, 
as a hostage or because he had been brought there 
for safety by Pelopidas. On his accession he 
promptly showed his energy and ability by suppress- 
ing two pretenders to the throne, and conquering 
the Paeonians on his northern frontier, as well as 
the Illyrians, those constant enemies in battle with 
whom his brother had fallen. He at the same time 
disarmed Athenian opposition by withdrawing the 
Macedonian garrison from Amphipolis and acknow- 
ledging its autonomy. The Athenians were also 
engaged in recovering Eubcea, which had for some 
years been a member of the Theban confederacy 
(B.C. 358), and were for the time less interested in 
affairs of the North. Philip availed himself of the 
opportunity to seize Pydna, on the coast of Pieria, 
thus securing a port on the Thermaic gulf, and again 
occupied Amphipolis on the Strymon, while by 
making an alliance with Olynthus he secured himself 
against opposition from Chalcidice. These proceed- 
ings would naturally have aroused enmity in Greece. 
But Sparta, weakened and humiliated, held aloof 
for some years while she was engaged in trying 
to recover her hegemony in the Peloponnese ; while 
Thebes and Athens were now effectually weakened 
by two wars : the former by the " Sacred War," which 
was undertaken at the order of the Amphictyonic 
Council to punish the Phocians for encroaching upon 
the sacred territory of Delphi, and lasted nearly nine 
years (B.C. 357-346); the latter by the ''Social 
War" (B.C. 357-355) caused by the defection of Chios 


and Byzantium, Rhodes and Cos from the league of 
B.C. 378. The pretexts alleged were that the Athe- 
nians had broken the covenant by sending out fresh 
cleruchs, and that their generals commanding mer- 
cenary forces (now constantly employed by Athens) 
not receiving sufficient pay from home, harassed 
the allies with requisitions beyond the stipulated 
contribution or syntaxis. The war ended in the 
acknowledgment of the independence of the revolting 
states, and, worse still, in the death or the discredit 
and ruin of the last great generals serving Athens, 
Iphicrates, Chabrias, and Timotheos. The state 
was also impoverished by the loss of contributions, 
and disabled from offering effectual opposition to 

In these circumstances the king was able to secure 
one advantage after another. In B.C. 356 he seized 
Potidaea, expelled Athenian clemchs, and sold most 
of the inhabitants into slavery, while his general, 
Parmenion, defeated the Illyrians in the West. He 
next enriched himself by occupying the district of 
Mount Pangaeus with its gold-mines, and founded 
the city of Philippi to secure it (B.C. 356-353). As 
the Athenians had been too late to relieve Potidaea, 
so now they were too late to prevent his seizing 
Methone in Magnesia ; after which he began to inter- 
fere at every point of disturbance in Greece. Now it 
was in Thessaly, to assist the Thessalian cities to 
resist the tyrants of Pherae (B.C. 356) ; now it was in 
Phocis, as champion of the god of Delphi, where, 
after sustaining two defeats, he eventually destroyed 
the Phocian army with its leader, Onomarchus. 


Presently he appeared at Thermopylae as though he 
would subdue Boeotia and Athens. And though the 
Athenians were at length roused to send a fleet 
which prevented his coming through the pass, he 
secured Pagasae and Magnesia, and instigated the 
Euboeans once more to throw off the rule of Athens 
(B.C. 350). In the next two years (B.C. 349-348) 
he turned upon his allies, the Olynthians, who had 
come to some secret understanding with Athens, and 
after a lengthened siege took and destroyed the 
town. The Athenians once more came too late to 
relieve it, in spite of the vehement exhortations of 
Demosthenes, who henceforth threw his whole 
energies into organising an opposition to Philip. 
But nothing seriously hindered his victorious career 
or the fulfilment of his ambition to secure supremacy 
in Greece. In B.C. 346, on the invitation of Thebes, 
he again interfered in the sacred war, which he 
brought to an end by overrunning Phocis, and 
thereby obtained admission to the Amphictyonic 
league as an Hellenic power. The same year was 
concluded the peace with Athens, called from the 
chief of the embassy the Peace of Philocrates. It 
was on this embassy that Demosthenes and his rival 
yEschines served, who afterwards vehemently accused 
each other of misconducting it. 

For seven years (B.C. 345-338) this peace was nomi- 
nally maintained. But Philip did not rest. lie was 
busy in strengthening his hold on Thessaly, in aiding 
the Messenians, Argives and Achseans to break down 
the supremacy of Sparta, in establishing his partisans 
as tyrants in the cities of Eubcea, as well as in 


D2M0STHENES, B.C. 3S4-3: 
(Vatican Museum) 



securing himself against the surrounding tribes of 
Epirus and Thrace. 

By the exertions of Demosthenes — who was 
throwing all the weight of his eloquence into the 
opposition to Philip — a number of states, from Byzan- 
tium and Perinthus in the East to Corcyra in the 
West, had allied themselves with Athens to resist 
his further aggrandisement, and the Persian satraps 
had been induced to give their aid. 1 For a brief 
space there seemed some hope, for Philip failed in 
his attack both on Perinthus and Byzantium. But 
in B.C. 337 the Amphictyons proclaimed another 
"sacred war" against the Locrians of Amphissa on 
the old charge of cultivating the sacred Cirrhaean 
plain, and summoned Philip to assist. He snatched 
at the opportunity, and in the winter of B.C. 339-338 
marched southward. But instead of proceeding to 
Amphissa he seized Elateia, which commanded 
the plain of Bceotia. This produced such a feel- 
ing of alarm throughout Greece that Demosthenes 
was able to induce Thebes to join the alliance, and a 
mercenary army of some fifteen thousand men was 
got together besides forces sent from Athens and 
other towns. The details of the campaign that 
followed are not known, except that Demosthenes 
says that the Greeks won two battles. But the 
upshot was that about August 1st, B.C. 338, Philip, 
having already taken Amphissa and annihiliated a 
large force of mercenaries, won a decisive victory 

1 The states persuaded by Demosthenes to join were Byzantium, 
Abydos, Euboea, Megara, Corinth, Achaia, Acarnania, Leucadia, 


over the Greeks near Choeroneia, in which the Theban 
sacred band was cut to pieces, a thousand Athenians 
were killed, and two thousand made prisoners. 

All resistance to Philip was at end. He hence- 
forth took a greater position in Greece than had 
hitherto been occupied by any supreme ruler or 
state. Macedonian garrisons were placed in Thebes 
and other cities, territories were assigned to or 
taken from certain states at the king's pleasure, 
and each state was compelled to be satisfied with its 
own territory without exercising any control over 
others. Thus all her maritime possessions were taken 
from Athens, while, on the other hand, her own 
frontiers were rectified so as to include Oropus, of 
which the Thebans had deprived her ; and as a 
special mark of the king's favour the 2,000 prisoners 
were restored without ransom. Philip then marched 
into the Peloponnese, where every state submitted 
but Sparta. The Spartans stood sullenly aloof, but 
their supremacy in the Peloponnese was gone ; they 
were independent but isolated, with a territory cur- 
tailed in every direction, and impoverished by the 
ravages of the Macedonian troops. Philip, indeed, 
gave a certain air of legalty to the new arrangements 
by summoning a conference at Corinth at which they 
were confirmed, and he himself was elected General 
(ij-ye/xwv) of all Greece. But the prosaic fact was 
that all combinations were dissolved, garrisons were 
placed in all important towns, and his word was law. 
This was a state of things in which Greece seemed 
unable to thrive, and a period of general decadence 
soon set in — industry, population, literature, all alike 

i li p i ll—Pl l ll *£ - ■ + 




being on the decline. On the other hand, Macedonian 
supremacy for a time secured the cessation of internal 
strife, and the wars of state with state, while it 
brought into existence a larger conception of Hel- 
lenism, and secured a wider field for its development. 





Death of King Philip II. — Accession of Alexander the Great, B.C. 
336 — Effect of Alexander's Eastern campaigns— Battle of the 
Granicus and the settlement of Asia Minor — Syria and Egypt 
B.C. 334-3 — In Central Asia, B.C. 331-323 — Effect of the death of 
Alexander, B.C. 323 — Formation of independent kingdoms — Con- 
sequences to the Greeks — Spartan resistance to Alexander, B.C. 333 
— The Lamian war and subjection of Greece, B.C. 323-2 — The 
new settlement of Greece — Athens under the successors of 
Alexander — Determination in Greece — The Celtic invasion, B.C. 
280-279 — The Greeks in Italy — The Greeks in Sicily — Timoleon 
in Sicily — Agathocles of Syracuse, B.C. 317-289 — Pyrrhus in Sicily, 
B.C. 278 — The Romans in Sicily, B.C. 262-242 — The whole of 
Sicily a Roman province, B.C. 212 — Literature in Sicily. 

THE meaning of Philip's triumph as interpreted 

by those friendly to him is expressed in the letter 

addressed to the king by the aged Athenian orator, 

Isocrates. He had pacified the states, united the 

nation, and was a great Panhellenic sovereign. 

Isocrates therefore exhorted him to make it his aim 

to crush Persia, the hereditary enemy of Greece. 

Philip had already let it be known that this was his 

purpose, and by his nomination as " general with 

absolute power " (oTjoar^yoe avroKparwp) by the con- 



gress at Corinth the Greeks formally adopted that 
policy. His head was somewhat turned by success ; 
he assumed the airs and designation of a god as 
Zeus Philippus. Nothing seemed too hard for him 
to do, and the answer given him by the Pythia at 
Delphi was regarded as favourable (" The bull is 
crowned, the end is come: the slayer is at hand"), 
though the tragedy which soon followed served to 
give it a different interpretation. For though he was 
encouraged to push on with this national undertaking, 
and actually despatched Attalus and Parmenio into 
Asia with orders to free the Greek cities, he was not 
destined to fight another campaign. Early the next 
year (B.C. 336) he was assassinated at a wedding 
feast by one of his own guards. His work was 
taken up by his son and successor, Alexander, 
whose mother, Olympias, was suspected of having 
been privy to the crime. 

Alexander was just twenty years old, and before 
he could enter upon what was to be his great work 
he was obliged to secure his power at home against 
the partisans of his father's second wife, and against 
the Illyrian tribe of the Triballi. The news of 
Philip's death had also incited the Greeks, at the 
instigation of Demosthenes, to strike for freedom. 
The appearance of Alexander at the head of an 
army repressed the movement, and he was elected 
" General with full powers," like his father. Next 
year, however, he was obliged to go to Amphipolis, 
and thence to the Danube, to suppress renewed 
risings of the barbarians ; and a false rumour having 
reached Greece that he had fallen, an insurrection 


broke out at Thebes, as well as in ^Etolia, Elis, and 
Arcadia. But Alexander marched rapidly south- 
wards. He besieged and took Thebes, which was 
destroyed, and its inhabitants for the most part sold 
into slavery. In the rest of Greece the rebellion 
immediately died out ; and next year (B.C. 334) 
Alexander started on his expedition against Darius. 

The marvellous conquests of Alexander, achieved 
in little more than ten years (B.C. 334-323), were the 
beginning of a new and more extensive Hellenism, 
which, however, was not to have its chief home in 
Greece, but in Asia Minor, Syria, and Egypt. For 
more than a thousand years Europe was no longer to 
fear invasion from the East ; and though Greece was 
to be no more really free, the next great empire to 
which it was to belong would absorb its ideas and 
give them a world-wide influence. 

Alexander's campaigns must be only briefly sum- 
marised here, and the general plan indicated. His 
army consisted of about 40,000 men of various 
nationalities. His phalanx — infantry trained to 
charge sixteen deep, and armed with long spears, or 
sarissce — consisted principally of 12,000 Mace- 
donians. He did not strike straight at the heart of 
the Persian Empire— at the capitals on the Euphrates 
or Tigris. His plan was first to secure Asia Minor 
and all the lands held by the Persian king bordering 
on the Mediterranean. This was done in three years. 
Crossing early in the spring of B.C. 334 from Sestos 
to Abydos, and first visiting Ilium, he won a deci- 
sive victory in a cavalry engagement at the River 
Granicus (May), and then captured in rapid succes- 


(British Museum.) 


sion Sardis — important as the place from which the 
great roads branched off — Ephesus, Magnesia, Miletus, 
and, in fact, all the Greek towns in Asia Minor. He 
hardly met with any resistance except at Ephesus and 
Halicarnassus where he was assisted by his fleet. 
The immediate effect upon the Greek towns was the 
establishment of a democratic form of government, 
of course in subordination to the Macedonian 
monarch. They were free from the Persian satraps, 
and from the tyrants which the satraps constantly 
set up. Those cities which submitted quietly received 
specially favourable treatment ; inscriptions are ex- 
tant recording remissions of contribution {syntaxis), 
restoration of temples, and the law against tyrants, in 
virtue of which they are deposed and declared outlaws. 
The settlement of Alexander was in some places, as 
in Lesbos, upset for a time by the Persian fleet under 
Memnon, and those who succeeded him after his death 
in B.C. 333 ; but in the next year Hegelochus, the com- 
mander of the Macedonian fleet, drove away the 
governors replaced by the Persians, and from that 
time the will of Alexander was supreme in Asia Minor 
and the islands. In these transactions he acted as the 
head of Hellas and encouraged Hellenic restorations. 
Thus he is said to have contributed largely to the 
expense of rebuilding the temple of Artemis at 
Ephesus, burnt the year of his birth. He rebuilt a 
temple to Athena at Pirene, and an inscription 
remains recording the dedication by one of his 
officers of a statue at Olympia. When sufficient 
time had elapsed to heal the feuds occasioned by the 
changes of dynasty one of the last acts of Alexander's 


life was to proclaim the return of all exiles, the 
Macedonian power after his marvellous victories being 
held sufficient to prevent party contests in the cities, 
which were to have no policy but his own. 

After the settlement of Asiatic Hellas, Alexander 
continued his conquests in Syria, Phoenicia, Pales- 
tine, and Egypt, thus securing his hold upon the 
western part of the Persian Empire, and making 
himself still more completely master of the 
Eastern Mediterranean. Darius was beaten and 
driven into headlong flight at the battle of Issus 
(B.C. 333), and while Alexander was engaged on the 
siege of Tyre (B.C. 332) offered to cede everything 
west of the Euphrates. But Alexander, though 
giving Darius ample time to reconstruct his shattered 
forces while he was himself engaged in completing 
these more western conquests, had not relinquished 
his plan of pushing his invasion into the very heart 
of the Persian Empire. No peace, therefore, was 
made ; and he went on with the siege of Tyre, which 
occupied him seven months, and then entered 
Palestine, where the only resistance experienced was 
at Gaza. 1 On the surrender of Gaza he proceeded 
by sea to Pelusium in the Delta of the Nile, and the 
Persian satrap at once surrendered. The Egyptians 
always disliked the Persians, who plundered and 
insulted their temples, while Alexander, as in 
Greece, was careful to show respect to the national 
religion. Landing at Pelusium he went up the river 

1 Josephus alone tells a story ot his having advanced upon Jerusalem 
to punish it for help given to Gaza, and having been turned aside by 
the appearance of the High Priest. 


bank to Memphis, where he sacrificed to Apis and 
held a festival of gymnastics and music. He even 
went several days' journey in the desert to visit the 
shrine and oracle of Ammon. He then went to the 
Canobic mouth and sailed round the Maeotic Lake. 
While there he was struck by the advantages of the 
strip of land opposite the island of Pharus, as a site 
for a town, and marked out a circuit of ten miles for 
the walls of what was called Alexandria after him, 
and very quickly rose to be one of the most impor- 
tant cities of the ancient world. Here, too, he was 
careful to respect the feelings of the natives, and 
to provide for a joint occupation of it ; while his 
plan embraced a temple to Isis as well as to the gods 
of Greece. 

With the immense prestige gained by his trium- 
phant march through Asia Minor to Egypt, and 
enriched by enormous treasures which he seized in 
Damascus and wherever the Persian Government 
had been centred, Alexander in the following year 
began his wonderful march into the interior of Asia, 
the heart of the Persian Empire. Darius had 
gathered a great host to meet him, and was en- 
camped on the Upper Tigris at Gaugamela, more 
than twenty miles from Arbela, which has given its 
name to the battle, and in which Darius had left his 
baggage and treasure. The victory of Alexander 
(September, B.C. 331), was again complete, and 
Darius fled into Media. All resistance at once 
collapsed ; there was no holding out of strong towns 
as at Tyre or Gaza. The Persian Empire passed to 
Alexander at one blow, with all its immense accumu- 


lations of treasure at Babylon, Susa, and Persepolis. 
Next year was taken up with the pursuit of Darius, 
and when he was assassinated by Bessus, in attack- 
ing Bessus himself, who had escaped to Bactria and 
there had himself crowned as " Artaxerxes, King of 
Asia." Bessus was quickly taken prisoner, muti- 
lated, and sent for execution to Ecbatana. Alex- 
ander now assumed the royal dress, ornaments, and 
power of the Persian kings. The enormous wealth 
found in the royal cities enriched both himself and 
his army, and, believing himself invincible, he em- 
barked on the most ambitious designs. " When he 
had conquered Sogdiana and Bactriana, he found 
himself stopped by the lofty mountain chain of the 
Hindu-kush ; and, to the south, he heard of the great 
waters of the Indus and the Deccan. Beyond were 
great peoples, with elephants and chariots, with a 
new culture and language, and a religion unknown 
even to report But neither mountains nor rivers 
were able to resist him. He passed over the Hindu- 
kush with his whole army — a task hardly any modern 
general would attempt ; he forced the Koord, Kabul, 
and Kyber Passes; he crossed the Indus, the 
Hydaspes, in the face of a great hostile army ; he 
conquered his new enemy and all his elephants with 
a skill not inferior to any yet shown ; the whole 
Punjaub was in his hands ; he was on the point of 
passing into India when his troops — his Macedonian 
troops — refused to go further" (B.C. 329-325). 1 

Alexander returned from the Indus partly by ship, 
and took up his residence at the various royal towns, 

1 J. P. Mahaffy in Alexander *s Emph-e. 


finally at Babylon. His object was now to make a 
great European-Asiatic Empire, as far as possible 
uniform in administration, and with inhabitants of 
mixed race. He sent home a large number of vete- 
rans who had mutinied in the Punjaub, he married 
a daughter of Darius, having already married a 
beautiful Bactrian named Roxana, and encouraged 
Macedonian officers to marry Persian wives. He 
also filled up the places of the veterans sent home 
with Persian recruits. He was planning further 
conquests in Arabia, and issuing orders as to the 
internal affairs of Greece, when all his schemes were 
cut short by a fever, to which he succumbed on the 
nth of June, B.C. 323. 

The death of Alexander was the signal for 
universal disruption. It did not come at once, or 
professedly as a consequence of his death. His half- 
brother, Philip Arrhidaeus, was declared King of 
Macedonia, with a reservation of the right of the 
child of Roxana by Alexander, if it should prove to 
be a boy, and meanwhile Perdiccas (to whom Alex- 
ander is said to have given his signet-ring) was to be 
guardian and chief director of the Empire, with the 
title of Chiliarch. Nevertheless the ultimate division 
of the Empire into separate and independent king- 
doms was foreshadowed by the division of the pro- 
vinces among the chief generals of Alexander, who 
were not likely long to submit to any one chief, or to 
act together. In fact, from this time to B.C. 301 
there was a constant succession of wars — the result 
of which was the formation of four considerable 
kingdoms : Macedonia, Syria, Egypt, and Thrace. 


These kingdoms were reduced to three on the death 
of Lysimachus, King of Thrace, in B.C. 281, whose 
dominions were divided between the kings of Egypt 
and Syria. Subordinate kingdoms — or what became 
such — in Asia, which afterwards grew to some import- 
ance, were those of Bithynia, Cappadocia, Pontus, 
and Pergamus. All these, though containing a large 
majority of non-Hellenic subjects, retained much of 
the Hellenic civilisation introduced or strengthened 
by Alexander. But the more eastern parts of his 
conquests lapsed quickly back to Orientalism, and 
before the middle of the next century the Parthians 
were winning nearly all that the Persian kings had 
held east of the Euphrates ; and Armenia, which 
first asserted and then lost its independence, never 
ceased to struggle till, in the second century B.C., it 
regained its national life. 

In one sense the formation of these kingdoms 
shattered the ideal of Hellenism — local autonomy and 
free constitutions. The miseries caused by the con- 
stant wars between such free constitutions had caused 
a widespread revulsion in favour of monarchies and 
strong states. The only alternative — that of leagues 
or alliances — had failed in the case of the two 
Athenian leagues of B.C. 476 and B.C. 378. An 
alliance of sea-powers, Byzantium, Chios, and Rhodes, 
had some temporary success, but was not strong 
enough to hold out against the united power of 
Rome. The experiment of a closer league was 
again made in the Peloponnese and ^Etolia, and we 
shall have hereafter to consider its brief success and 
final failure. 


To the Greeks of the day, however, the death of 
Alexander seemed to promise them a renewal of 
freedom. They had never heartily acquiesced in his 
supremacy. Sparta, indeed, had never yielded to 
Philip, and had continued to play the part of pro- 
tector of Greek freedom. In B.C. 338 one of its kings, 
Archedamus III., had crossed to Italy to assist the 
Lacedaemonian colony of Tarentum in its struggles 
with surrounding barbarians, and had fallen on the 
same day, it is said, as that of the battle of Chaeroneia. 
His son and successor, Agis III., made an alliance 



with the Persian satraps in B.C. 333, and being sup- 
plied by them with money and ships, occupied the 
greater part of Crete, while Alexander was engaged 
in Thrace and Bceotia. In B.C. 331, when he had 
crossed to Asia, Agis induced the Eleians, Achaeans 
and Arcadians to join in an open rebellion, and began 
the war by besieging Megalopolis, which refused to 
join him. But this short-lived revolt was sternly 
suppressed by Antipater, whom Alexander had left 
in charge of Macedonia. More than 5,000 Lacedae- 
monians are said to have fallen, and this seems to 


have been a fatal blow to Spartan power and activity, 
for Sparta took no part in the rising which followed 
on the news of Alexander's death. 

But nearly all the rest of Greece did join this 
movement. It was warmly promoted by Demos- 
thenes, who had been living in banishment at ^Egina 
since B.C. 324, for having accepted a bribe from 
Harpalus, a dishonest officer of Alexander's who had 
fled to Athens. He was now recalled, and threw 
himself eagerly into the task of persuading the Greek 
states to join. They had recently been made still 
more disaffected by the decree of Alexander for the 
restoration of exiles, and there seems to have been 
little hesitation anywhere. A body of men who had 
served in Alexander's army as mercenaries, and had 
been sent home by his order, were stationed in 
Taenarum, and an energetic leader named Leos- 
thenes having been secured, these men, with con- 
tingents from all parts of Greece, were mustered at 
Thermopylae, as though once more to make a stand 
there for freedom. The war has been called the 
Lamian War (B.C. 323-322), because it began by 
a siege of Antipater in Lamia, some twenty-five 
miles north of Thermopylae. Unfortunately Leos- 
thenes fell during the siege, and his successor, 
Antiphilus, though he won one battle against the 
Macedonian Leonnatus, was defeated by the com- 
bined forces of Antipater and Craterus at Crannon, in 
Thessaly (August, B.C. 322). Though the Greeks 
lost heavily in the battle, the defeat was not so 
decisive as to account in itself for a complete col- 
lapse. But shortly before this a fleet of 170 vessels, 


under an Athenian commander, which had been 
operating among the Ionian islands, sustained two 
severe defeats off the Echinadse — a group of islands 
on the south coast of Acarnania — and the Mace- 
donians were left in complete command of the sea. 
The Greek states had therefore no option : they 
were obliged to submit. They did indeed try to 
bargain that terms should be made with them en bloc, 
but the Macedonian generals would not admit of this, 
and insisted on each state being treated with sepa- 
rately. They enforced their view by storming the 
Thessalian cities, and before long the whole country 
submitted. Some states received more indulgent 
treatment than others, but the general result was 
that they had to admit a Macedonian garrison, and 
to submit to such changes of constitution as the 
Macedonian government thought necessary to secure 
that the party favouring the Macedonians should 
have the chief power in the several states. 

In the Peloponnesian cities this seems to have 
been effected generally by establishing oligarchies or 
tyrants ; in Athens, while a Macedonian garrison 
was to be stationed in Munychia, the franchise was 
to be restricted to men possessing property to the 
value of two thousand drachmae, and the greater part 
of those below this standard were compelled to 
emigrate, principally to Thrace, only about 9,000 
full citizens being left. The surrender of the orators 
who had taken part against Macedonia was also 
demanded, and Demosthenes poisoned himself rather 
than fall into their hands. The Athenians were also 
required to withdraw their cleruchs from Samos, and 


to give up all authority there. It is true that in the 
struggles that ensued between the governors, who 
had divided the Empire among themselves, the free- 
dom of Greece and the independence of its cities was 
more than once proclaimed — as in B.C. 318 by Poly- 
perchon, the successor of Antipater as regent, in 
B.C. 314 by Antigonus in order to drive out Cassan- 
der, Antipater's son, and in B.C. 311, when these 
governors made formal peace with each other. But 
this declaration only served as an excuse for fresh 
war between these princes under pretext of freeing 
Greek towns, which suffered sieges and devastations 
from both sides alternately. The constant quarrels 
between the Diadochi, however — especially the dis- 
putes as to the regency, and then the throne, of 
Macedonia — did allow the Greek cities in Europe 
gradually to assert a kind of independence. There 
were Macedonian garrisons in some towns, but not 
in all, and banished democrats found their way back 
from time to time and restored some sort of free 

Athens underwent more changes of fortune, per- 
haps, than any other state. After the Lamian war 
(B.C. 322) twelve thousand citizens had been banished. 
In B.C. 318, Cassander, son of the late regent 
Antipater, having only the office of Chiliarch, tried 
to secure his position against the regent Polyperchon 
by making himself master of Athens with the conni- 
vance of the oligarchical party headed by Phocion, 
the old opponent of Demosthenes. The Athenian 
democrats, seeing an opportunity, sided with Poly- 
perchon, who had proclaimed the independence of 


2 ^ 



Greek cities, and the recall of exiles. Phocion was 
condemned to death, and the democracy fancied itself 
restored. But Cassander was too strong to be 
ousted. Retaining his hold on Munychia and 
Piraeus, he placed Athens under the rule of 
Demetrius of Phalerum, a poet, orator, and man of 
letters, under whose mild sway the city had ten years 
of peace and content (B.C. 317-307), though without 
the old strenuous life and activity. Participation in 
public affairs became unfashionable, and few were 
willing to bear state burdens. Yet its ancient repu- 
tation as a seat of literature and philosophy did not 
disappear at once. The poets of the New Coined}' 
were either Athenians or lived for many years in 
Athens, as being the place where they could obtain 
and enjoy the widest fame and the most favourable 
opportunities. The greatest of them all — Menander 
(B.C. 342-290) — was a native Athenian. Philemon of 
Syracuse (B.C. 388-292) was early in life granted 
citizenship at Athens, where he lived for the greater 
part of his long life ; and of the other twenty or 
twenty-four poets of the New Comedy quoted or 
named by later writers, the majority were Athenians 
or residents at Athens. But Comedy was no longer 
political and personal, statesmen were no longer 
worth attacking, or it was no longer safe to touch on 
public affairs. It was a comedy of manners, and its 
characters were intriguing youths, girls virtuous or 
the reverse, cunning slaves, greedy parasites, stern or 
indulgent fathers. The society represented was that 
pictured in the "Characters" of Theophrastus, the 
successor of Aristotle (B.C. 372-287) — a society of 


petty ambitions and narrow interests. Nor was 
oratory what it had been, when the interests 
concerned were greater and the issues more por- 
tentous. It came to be used as the vehicle of 
literary or social criticism rather than as the art 
of persuasion. And the most flourishing schools 
of rhetoric were found rather in other parts of 
Hellas — in Rhodes and the Asiatic cities. Philo- 
sophy, however, continued to find its chief home in 
Athens. Plato, who died in B.C. 347, and Aristotle 
in B.C. 322, had successors in their Schools of 
adequate abilities, though of far inferior influence. 
But Epicurus — an Athenian, though born in Samos 
— coming to Athens in B.C. 307, drew numerous 
pupils to his quiet garden to listen to doctrines which 
were to have an influence beyond the Hellenic world; 
and Zeno about the same time made the Stoa, in 
which he taught the fountain head of an elevated 
philosophy which attracted many of the best minds 
for many centuries after his death. It is true that 
there was an opposition which in B.C. 305 carried 
a decree banishing all philosophers, but this was 
repealed in the next year, and Athens gradually 
became a place of study and a university, though its 
fortifications, especially at the harbour, were still 
sufficiently formidable to make it a place of arms if 
the same spirit had still inspired its citizens. Yet it 
never again played a serious part in Greek politics, 
and practical men like Polybius were apt to sneer 
even at its philosophical schools as encouraging 
useless and sophistical speculations rather than 
sound learning. 




(Vatican Museum.) 


The decay of other parts of Greece was still more 
marked. Thessaly was practically incorporated with 
Macedonia, and though for a time it seems to have 
enjoyed a quiet kind of prosperity, it suffered much 
in after-times as the battle-ground of Macedonia and 
Rome. In Sparta the true Spartans were steadily 
dwindling, the land was passing into the hands of 
a few families, the institutions which had created a 
nation of soldiers were falling into neglect, and the 
government was becoming more and more oligar- 
chical. A small class of wealthy persons were living 
in a nation for the most part idle and needy — a 
" Laconian " no longer suggested the idea of a brave 
and simple soldier so much as of a needy buffoon. 
Here, however, as in Thessaly and in the Lacedaemo- 
nian colony at Tarentum, there was still a military 
class, which probably included the most e lergetic 
portion of the citizens, who were highly valued by 
other states or sovereigns as mercenary soldiers. 
The decadence of Bceotia was perhaps more marked 
than that of the other parts of Greece. Cassander 
restored Thebes in B.C. 315 (it had always retained 
some of its inhabitants, and the temples had not 
been destroyed), but it did not recover political 
power or influence. The two cities of Bceotia which 
did retain a certain prosperity were Thespiae and 
Tanagra, where a fine kind of pottery ware was pro- 
duced. In the rest of Bceotia a rather vulgar luxury 
and ostentation took the place of political activity. 
Polybius says that the decline became rapid after 
a war with the yEtolians in B.C. 245, but asserts that 
it began much earlier. With this political decline 


came not only a decline in literature and art, but 
a change in their central home to such places as 
Pergamus, Alexandria, or Syracuse. 

Yet in spite of this decline in vigour, the Greeks 
showed in the presence of the next great national 
danger that they had not quite forgotten their ancient 
valour. In B.C. 280 a horde of Celts (Gauls), number- 
ing, say the historians (with no doubt some exaggera- 
tion), 300,000 souls, crossed the Alps into Pannonia, 
and there divided into two hosts for the invasion of 
Macedonia and Greece. The next year Macedonia 
and Thrace were overrun, the king (Ptolemy Ceraunus) 
killed, and the country everywhere ravaged and 
plundered. These Celts appear to have gone back 
home for the winter, but the next year a horde of 
over 150,000 foot and 20,000 horse entered Greece. 
The danger called forth almost for the last time a 
combined movement of Greek states in defence of 
freedom. The Barbarians marched down to Thermo- 
pylae, which was being held by a combined army 
of Athenians, Boeotians, Phocians, Megarians, and 
^Etolians, supported by a fleet off the shore. The 
Gauls discovered the path over Mount Callidromus 
by which Leonidas had of old been surrounded ; but 
the Greeks defended themselves with courage, and 
were able to get on board their ships in safety. 
The Gauls, however, had won the pass, and thence, 
like one column of Xerxes' army, made for Delphi, 
attracted by the report of the immense wealth stored 
there. The repulse which they met with at Delphi 
was attributed, like that of the troops of Xerxes, to 
the direct interposition of the god and the appear- 



ance of the local heroes. There is the same earth- 
quake, and the fall of an immense rock from 
Parnassus. But a more rationalistic explanation is 
that which speaks of the weariness of the Gauls and 
their intemperance. The oracle had bidden the 
country people not to take their food and wine from 
their houses, and the Gauls — as was their wont — 
revelled in the booty which they found ready to their 
hands. Delphi had also been put into a state of 
defence, and allies had mustered there from yEtolia 
and all the surrounding cities. A great number of 
the Gauls fell in battle, and, according to one story, 
a still greater number by mutual slaughter the fol- 
lowing evening, in consequence of a mysterious panic 
that fell upon them. At any rate, they passed away 
northward, pursued and harassed by Athenians and 
other peoples, and crossed over to Asia, where after 
various fortunes they were finally driven further 
inland by the rulers of Pergamus and gave their 
name to Galatia, or enlisted as mercenaries in 
various services in Asia and Europe. They had 
been turned towards Macedonia and Greece because 
the growing power of Rome had prevented further 
immigrations into Italy after the victory at Sentinum 
in Umbria (B.C. 295), and their repulse at Delphi was 
the last successful movement of united Hellas against 
a foreign invader. 

Meanwhile the Greek world in the West had been 
passing through vicissitudes, in some respect like 
those in Greece itself, which led eventually to a 
more complete decadence. We know little of the 
early history of the Greek cities in Southern Italy, 


but they seem to have resembled their parent cities 
in the constant quarrels and wars which they waged 
with each other. Such combinations and leagues as 
were from time to time formed arose from the 
necessity of repelling common enemies — Lucani, 
Messapii, or Samnites. As in Greece, too, some one 
city possessed or claimed hegemony among the 
rest, in which it was opposed by some other which 
differed from it in origin, constitution, or habits. In 
early times this primacy seems to have been held by 
Sybaris — afterwards a bye word, perhaps unjustly, for 
wealth and luxury — whose rival was Croton. The 
people of Croton, an Achaean colony, prided 
themselves on a healthier and more manly way of 
life. They zealously practised athletics, won a great 
many prizes at Olympia, and rewarded those of their 
citizens who were victors with the highest honours 
and commands. In a war with Sybaris (about 
B.C. 510) they utterly destroyed that city. But 
they did not long enjoy the primacy they secured, 
for not many years later they sustained a crushing 
defeat at the hands of the people of Locri Epizypherii 
and Rhegium. In common with other towns of 
South Italy, they suffered much in the fifth century 
from a series of democratic revolutions brought on 
by popular risings against the followers of the 
philosopher Pythagoras, who settled in Croton 
about B.C. 530. His followers in after-years formed 
societies or clubs, which among other things 
supported oligarchical ideas. Nevertheless, when 
Dionysius of Syracuse crossed over to attack Magna 
Graecia (B.C. 389), Croton was the head of the league 


(British Museum.) 


formed to repel him. Fifty years later, Tarentum — 
a colony of Sparta — began to claim the hegemony. 
But as far as it did exercise this leadership, Tarentum 
guided the Greek cities to their ruin. The Taren- 
tines adopted the policy, which had so often proved 
mischievous, of invoking foreign help against the 
surrounding natives — first from Sparta, in B.C. 338, 
when King Archidamus came to their aid, only to fall 
in battle with the Barbarians ; next from Epirus in 
B.C. 333, when Alexander, King of the Molossi, and 
brother-in-law of Alexander the Great, came with 
great ideas of making an empire in the West like that 
of his namesake in the East. The result was that the 
Tarentines drew back, and he tried to establish a 
new Hellenic league to meet at Thurii. He lost his 
life, however, in the midst of his career by the 
treachery of a Lucanian native in his own bodyguard 
(B.C. 331). Finally it was the Tarentines who in- 
vited Pyrrhus in B.C. 280, not now against Samnite 
or Lucanian, but against Rome, with whom they had 
been strong enough some fifty years before to make 
an advantageous treaty. The defeat of Pyrrhus 
(B.C. 275) and the capture of Tarentum by the 
Romans (B.C. 272) were the sure prelude to the loss 
of freedom for all the Greek cities. They had to join 
the Roman system, some on better terms than others, 
but all in some sort as subjects. For a time this 
seems to have secured a spell of security and pros- 
perity for some of them — a relief, perhaps, from the 
attacks of surrounding nations. In B.C. 264 it was 
to the Greek Tarentum, Locri, Elea, and Naples, 
that the Romans had to go for ships to meet the 


Carthaginians in Sicily; and in B.C. 217, after the 
first disasters in the Second Punic War, Naples, 
Paestum, and Syracuse were foremost in the offers 
of help and encouragement to Rome. But the Italian 
campaigns of Hannibal were fatal to most of them, 
and in the next century all but Tarentum, Naples, 
and Rhegium lost not only material prosperity, but 
almost all traces of Hellenic life. 

In Sicily that life lasted longer. The Greek cities 
there (about twenty) had from early times to contend 
with the encroaching power of the Carthaginians as 
well as with mutual jealousies and quarrels. They 
had, however, enjoyed a considerable period of pros- 
perity. Letters and art had flourished ; stately 
temples and other public buildings had attracted 
universal admiration, and the fertility of the soil 
gained them wealth and luxury. The most powerful 
of the cities were Agrigentum and Syracuse. But 
it was the latter which was the chief champion of 
freedom against the Carthaginians, and after the 
victory of its tyrant Gelo over them in B.C. 480 
the Greek cities enjoyed about seventy years' im- 
munity from this danger. After the destruction of 
the Athenian armament in B.C. 413 Syracusan ships 
had even been sent eastward to co-operate with the 
Spartans, as though Syracuse were now one of the 
great Hellenic powers. But after the Carthaginian 
invasions of B.C. 409-6, under the usual pretext of 
assisting one city against another, Agrigentum suf- 
fered so severely as to cease for many years to be 
of any importance. Henceforth the hegemony 
belonged to Syracuse without dispute. In Syracuse, 

m ■ 




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EPICURUS, B.C. 342-27O. 



as in Agrigentum and other cities, there had been 
many changes of government. Troublous times had 
generally resulted in the establishment of some 
despot. Gelo (B.C. 485-476) and Hiero (B.C. 478- 
467) had not only repulsed Carthaginians, but had 
raised the power and prestige of the city to a great 
height. The democracy which followed the expul- 
sion of its last despot Thrasybulus (B.C. 466) was 
overthrown by Dionysius in B.C. 405. He retained 
power till his death in B.C. 367. After a struggle 
of fourteen years he was able to make a treaty which 
confined the Carthaginians to the part of the island 
west of the River Halycus (B.C. 383). His reign was 
a period of great glory for Syracuse. He possessed 
a powerful fleet ; the city was adorned with splendid 
buildings ; he encouraged literature and art, and wel- 
comed philosophers and men of learning to his court. 
Yet it was not a happy time for Western Greece. 
Dionysius and his fleets, indeed, were able to suppress 
Etruscan and Illyrian pirates, and to keep safe both 
the Adriatic and Tyrrhenian seas ; but he used them 
also to force the cities of Southern Italy to submit to 
him. The special object of his enmity was Rhegium, 
against which he supported Locri as a centre of his 
influence. This, and the constant danger from the 
neighbouring Lucanians, forced the Greek cities in 
Italy to combine against him. But he won a great 
victory over their united forces, and thenceforth, 
though they were not annexed, his will was para- 
mount among them. Perhaps this might have had 
the same counterbalancing advantages, in securing 
:e and rest, as in some way made up to cities 


in Greece for the loss of their independence under 
Macedonian rule. But whatever advantages were 
thus gained disappeared under the troubled reign 
of his son (B.C. 367-344), twice interrupted as it 
was by revolutions. The other cities in Sicily shook 
off the supremacy of Syracuse, but generally fell 
under the rule of incompetent tyrants. The Cartha- 
ginians reappeared and even got possession of the 
greater part of the city of Syracuse (B.C. 345). 

The state of the island was exceedingly miserable, 
when Timoleon of Corinth arrived in B.C. 345 with 
the express purpose of putting down tyranny in the 
cities and checking the encroachments of the Cartha- 
ginians. He came in answer to a petition from 
Syracuse and in a spirit of knight-errantry which 
makes the story read like a romance. He was 
eagerly welcomed at Rhegium as well as by the 
Sicilian cities. The Carthaginians were driven from 
Syracuse, the tyrants were deposed in the cities, and 
the Carthaginian side of the island even was invaded 
and their army crushed in a great battle on the 
banks of the Cremisus (B.C. 340). Unlike other 
so-called deliverers, Timoleon did not use his suc- 
cess to establish power for himself, but lived in 
Syracuse as a private citizen, beloved and honoured 
till his death in B.C. 336. Free institutions now 
prevailed in the Greek cities and a few years of 
prosperity followed ; deserted cities became populous 
again, and the land which had been lying fallow was 
once more cultivated. The cities were also once more 
adorned with splendid buildings and fine works of art. 

Agathocles, whom the necessity of fighting the 


Carthaginians again raised to supreme power in 
B.C. 317, seems not to have impaired this prosperity. 
On the contrary, he secured a period of peace to 
Sicily by carrying the war into Carthaginian territory 
in Africa and stirring up the African cities to rebel- 
lion against Carthage. But after his death (B.C. 298) 
some Italian mercenaries — called Mamertini, "Sons 
of Mamers," or " Mars "—whom he had employed, 
seized on Messene, expelled or put to death the 
male inhabitants, and took possession of the city, 
lands, women, and children. They made their stolen 
home the vantage-ground for plundering expeditions 
upon other cities, and thus one Greek city not only 
ceased to be Hellenic, but became a danger to other 
Hellenic cities, who now had two enemies instead of 
one to combat. Syracuse itself was torn by internal 
factions, and was held — in spite of its nominal free 
government — by one military adventurer after 
another and could do nothing against either the 
Carthaginians or the Mamertines. 

Ten years of great misery were the consequence ; 
and it was to heal these disorders that Pyrrhus, who 
had married a daughter of Agathocles, was invited 
to leave his campaign in Italy and come to Sicily 
(B.C. 278). But though Pyrrhus — another knight- 
errant — had for a time as great a success as Timo- 
leon, he did not, like him, retain the confidence of 
the Sicilians. He restored some sort of order at 
Syracuse, cut off marauding parties of the Mamer- 
tines, drove the Carthaginian garrison from Agri- 
gentum and Eryx, Hercte and Panormus, and 
seemed on the point of expelling them altogether 


from Sicily and thus anticipating the result of the 
First Punic War. But one Carthaginian stronghold 
held out — Lilybaeum ; and this he failed after a 
lengthy siege to take. This failure ruined his posi- 
tion in Sicily. In Syracuse plots were made against 
him ; in the other cities murmurs arose that he aimed 
at making himself tyrant, that he was granting lands 
to his friends, and putting men in places of trust 
who tampered with justice. In the latter part of 
B.C. 276, therefore, he left Sicily and went back to 
meet disaster in Italy. 

The old state of disorder immediately revived. 
The Carthaginians recovered their territory west of 
the Halycus, reoccupied Agrigentum, and again 
began intriguing to assert their authority throughout 
the island. Syracuse, with its subordinate towns, 
naturally fell once more under the power of a 
military despot, this time happily an able and 
moderate man, Hiero II. (B.C. 270-216). By his 
prudence the kingdom of Syracuse remained inde- 
pendent, when the rest of Sicily became Roman in B.C. 
242. The effect of the first Punic war was that the 
Roman government took over the supremacy exercised 
by Carthage, and the cities paid their tenths of corn 
and other produce to the Roman exchequer. Each city 
was to enjoy its own laws and courts, but an appeal 
would lie from them to that of the praetor sent 
annually from Rome. Some few towns were excused 
the tenths, as having served the Roman cause, but 
even they were bound to supply ships and sailors or 
soldiers to serve in the Roman army and navy. 
Rome protected them and maintained peace, but 


they lost the right to maintain an army or to go to 
war, in fact to have any foreign policy. 

The kingdom of Syracuse came to an end after 
the capture of the city by Marcellus in B.C. 214, and 
was added to the rest of the island as one Roman 
province. This is the permanent subjection of 
another once important and flourishing portion of 
Hellas, preceded, if not caused, by a long series 
of intestine disorders and appeals for outside help 
as in Greece itself. It is a kind of epitome of 
Greek history. It is difficult to decide exactly 
what the effect of the Roman occupation was. The 
cities retained much of Hellenic habits and aspect, 
and in spite of the immense robberies of Marcellus 
and others, many works of Greek art as well as the 
stately temples which beautified them. But besides 
large districts — such as the Leontine plain — which 
were made ager publicus, the lands fell for the most 
part into the hands of Roman speculators who worked 
them by slave labour. The slaves were in many 
cases the Sicilians themselves, Greek by origin, whose 
fathers, at any rate, had once owned the lands on 
which they laboured. Others, perhaps, were imported 
from Africa or the East. The stewards and agents 
of the Italian landowners no doubt found the 
country pleasant enough, but those Greeks who 
retained property and freedom had much to suffer at 
the hands of corrupt governors and oppressive tax- 
collectors. The miserable state of the slaves again 
was shown by the two dreadful servile wars of 
B.C. 134 and 103. Its history, however, henceforth 
follows that of Rome rather than of Greece. 


The Greek towns in Sicily had had an intellectual 
life by no means unimportant in the general sum of 
Greek culture. Stesichorus of Himera flourished 
about B.C. 600 and was one of the earliest writers 
of lyrical as well as other poetry. Comedy seems 
to have been brought to Hyblaean Megara from 
Megara in Greece, and Epicharmus of Cos, one of 
its earliest authors, spent the greater part of his life 
there (fl. about B.C. 475). The court of Hiero I. 
(B.C. 478-467) was frequented by the greatest writers 
— ^Eschylus, Pindar, Bacchylides, Simonides, and the 
poet-philosopher Xenophanes. Leontini was the 
home of the famous Sophist Gorgias ; Agrigentum 
of Empedocles (fl. B.C. 445). Philistus, the his- 
torian of Sicily and other countries, was a native of 
Syracuse (fl. B.C. 395), Xenarchus, the mimograph, 
resided at the court of Dionysius, Apollodorus, a 
comic poet, was a native of Gela (fl. B.C. 340). 
Dionysius the elder was himself a writer in various 
styles and encouraged the presence of philosophers 
and men of letters ; and the most famous of ancient 
mathematicians, Archimedes, was born at Syracuse 
about B.C. 287. But the poet of Sicily, whose fame 
has been most abiding, is Theocritus of Syracuse 
(fl. about B.C. 284-270). There must still have been 
peaceful and quiet scenes of country life to be found 
in Sicily, in spite of wars and revolutions, to inspire 
his sweet pastoral muse. Like other poets of his 
day, he spent some of his time in Alexandria under 
the patronage of the second Ptolemy (Philadelphus), 
but his idyll on the Adonis feast — a dialogue between 
two Syracusan women — has nothing of town life 



about it ; the women arc country women and go 
sight-seeiqg with all the freshness and naivete of 
country folk. Nearly contemporary with Theocritus 
was Moschus, also born at Syracuse, from whom we 
have four surviving pastorals, one of them a lament 
for the death of Bion of Smyrna, who had himself 
conic to Sicily to cultivate the bucolic muse. 



Gradual formation of kingdoms after the death of Alexander — Five 
kings, B.C. 306 — Four kingdoms, B.C. 301 — Three kingdoms- 
Macedonia, Syria and Egypt, B.C. 281 — The three kingdoms from 
B.C. 280 to B.C. 220— Greece and the Macedonians — The ^Etolian 
League — The Achaean League — The Kings of Macedonia and 
the Achaean League — War between Sparta and the Achaean 
League — The " Cleomenic War,'' B.C. 224-222— Philip V. of 
Macedonia, B.C. 220-179 — A state of general warfare, B.C. 
220-217 — The position of Athens — Ascendency of Philip V. 
— He joins Hannibal against Rome — The disturbed state 
of Greece in B.C. 211 to B.C. 200 — Philip's agreement with 
Antiochus to partition the outlying dominions of Egypt, 
B.C. 205-200 — Combination in Greece against Philip, B.C. 200 — 
The Romans intervene — Roman troops in Epirus — T. Quinctius 
Flamininus in Greece, B.C. 198 — Effects of the Battle of Cynos- 
cephalae, B.C. 197 — The Roman settlement of Greece — Disturbing 
elements in Greece — The ^Etolians invite the interference of 
Antiochus — Antiochus comes to Greece — Antiochus is disappointed 
as to support in Greece — ^Etolian war, B.C. 191-189 — Battle of 
Magnesia, B.C. 190 — Settlement of Asia after the defeat of 
Antiochus, B.C. 189 — The kingdom of Pergamus — Subjection of 
/Etolia, B.C. 187 — The Achaean League and Rome— General unrest 
in Greece — The accession and policy of Perseus, B.C. 179-168 — 
General movement in Greece against Rome, B.C. 1 7 1 - 1 70— Severe 
treatment of Greek states by the Romans — Dissolution of the 
Achaean League, B.C. 146-5 — Decadence of Greece under the 



THE struggles between the generals, who divided 
among themselves the world of Alexander, went 
through five stages before things settled down into 
the state in which we find them in the last period of 
Greek nominal independence. In the first two of 
these, B.C. 323 and 321, the empire is still professedly 
united under the two kings, Philip Arrhidaeus (half- 
brother of Alexander the Great) and Alexander IV., 
his posthumous child by Roxana. In the third (B.C. 
312) Philip has disappeared (murdered by Olympias 
in B.C. 317), and though Alexander is still nominally 

OF EGYPT, OB. B.C. 285. 

king, four great satraps are really exercising inde- 
pendent power — Ptolemy, son of Lagos, in Egypt ; 
Lysimachus, in Thrace ; Antigonus, in Asia ; 
Seleucus in Babylonia. In B.C. 311 Alexander and 
Roxana were murdered by the order of Cassander. 
Then followed fresh quarrels, ended at last by a 
naval victory of Demetrius, son of Antigonus, over 
Ptolemy (B.C. 306). 

After this the Diadochi assumed the title of king, 
Ptolemy of Egypt, Antigonus of Syria and Asia 
Minor, Seleucus of Upper Asia (Babylonia), Lysima- 


chus of Thrace, Cassander (son of Anti pater the 
second regent) of Macedonia. There is now no 
pretence of unity ; Alexander's Empire has been 
resolved into its component parts. Then followed 
five more years of quarrel, caused partly by the con- 
flicting claims of Lysimachus and Antigonus upon 
Asia Minor, partly by the question whether Ccele- 
Syria and Palestine are to belong to the kingdom 
of Egypt or to that of Antigonus in Upper Asia. 
This was ended by the battle of Ipsus in Phrygia 
(B.C. 301), in which Antigonus and his son Demetrius 


OF SYRIA, OB. B.C. 280. 

the Besieger were defeated by the three kings, 
Ptolemy, Lysimachus, and Seleucus, and Antigonus 
was killed. 

This led to the fifth re-arrangement. There were 
now four great kingdoms — Egypt, Syria, Thrace 
with part of Asia Minor, Macedonia. Besides these 
Demetrius the Besieger had assumed the title of king, 
though he had no regular kingdom. He was, how- 
ever, possessed of a strong fleet, and dominated 
Cyprus, Tyre and Sidon, and soon after the death of 
Cassander (B.C. 295) became King of Macedonia for 


two years, having just before asserted his power over 
Athens and Greece. He lost the kingdom of Mace- 
donia in B.C. 287, and died a prisoner in Asia in 
B.C. 283. The succession to the Macedonian throne 
was a matter of dispute until it was secured by 
Antigonus Gonatas, son of Demetrius, in B.C. 277. 

By that time a sixth rearrangement had been 
made. For a short time Lysimachus of Thrace had 
held Macedonia (B.C. 289-281), part of the time in 
conjunction with Pyrrhus, but on his defeat and 
death (B.C. 281) the kingdom of Thrace disappeared. 


His dominions in Asia Minor were taken over by 
the King of Syria, and the islands with the cities on 
the Thracian Chersonese by the King of Egypt. 

In the sixty years which elapsed between these 
events and the first political contact between Greece 
and Rome (B.C. 280-220) the three kingdoms had 
developed under the dynasties thus established. 
The Macedonian kings had been engaged in main- 
taining and extending their power in Greece ; the 
Ptolemies had made Alexandria a centre of intellec- 
tual life and the richest city in the world ; the Seleucids 
had at any rate kept back the tribes of the interior 


from Syria and Asia Minor, though a new monarchy- 
had arisen beyond the Euphrates under the Parthian 
Arsaces (B.C. 350), one day to be a terror to the 
West. The minor kingdoms of Pergamus, Pontus, 
and Bithynia had come into existence, and the con- 
federacy of the sea-powers Byzantium, Chios, and 
Rhodes was still an important element in the political 

Greece Proper, meanwhile, though political inde- 
pendence was lost, in spite of proclamations of 
its freedom by various Macedonian pretenders, had 
enjoyed a good deal of practical liberty amidst the 
quarrels that distracted and weakened Macedonia. 
There was an aftermath of literature and art, and at 
no period was the credit of philosophers higher or the 
influence of their teaching more marked. But what- 
ever freedom the Greeks possessed it was not generally 
political. The active and energetic men in the 
various cities adopted the profession of arms and 
served in the armies of the various sovereigns in 
Europe, Asia or Egypt. Those who remained at 
home devoted themselves either to country life, or, if in 
cities, to letters and philosophy of a kind. The most 
active gave themselves up to training for the games, 
a pursuit, however, which had been spoiled for 
ordinary people by professionalism, the athletes 
forming a well-defined class to which it required 
special aptitude and most elaborate training to 

All political vigour, however, had not died out in 
Greece. We have seen how the Greeks in B.C. 
280-279 were once more able to unite and repel the 


invading Celts. In one quarter — once the least con- 
sidered in Greece — freedom had never been lost. 
The ^Etolians — a rugged people living in open 
villages in a mountainous country — had repelled 
invasions of Athenians during the Peloponnesian 
war and of the Macedonians both in the time of 
Philip and Alexander, and in that of his successors. 
They had taken the chief part in the repulse of the 
Celts, and were gradually forming a league of cities 
outside their own borders, in the Peloponnese, 
Thessaly, and the Islands. They were, as a nation, 
much addicted to plundering and piracy, and their 
acknowledged principle was that where spoils were 
going they would take a share without any declara- 
tion of war (Jiyuv Xcupvpov cnro \a(f>vpu)v). Their 
yearly elected Strategus seems, to have had the right 
to go to war on his own authority, and their constant 
raids upon Elis, above all, are attested by many 
writers. They were, however, making a great posi- 
tion for themselves in Greece. About B.C. 240 they 
appear to have got the management of the Temple 
at Delphi into their hands, monopolising the Am- 
phictyonic Assembly, and excluding for a time the 
deputies from other places, thus making themselves, 
in a way, the mouthpiece of Greece and the arbiters in 
questions as to the laws of war. However, it seems to 
have been thought by certain states that an union with 
the ^tolian League was advantageous, while in other 
cases their adhesion was more or less compulsory. 
The terms on which they joined survive in an inscrip- 
tion containing their treaty with the island of Ceos, 
which had some traditional connection with them as 



a colony from Naupactus, a town which had been 
presented to them by Philip II. in B.C. 341. These 
terms are that the yEtolians are to abstain from 
pillaging the Ceans by land and sea ; are not to 
summon them before the Amphictyonic Council 
(which only had jurisdiction between two foreign 
states) ; complaints of pillage on the part of Ceans 
are to go before the Strategus and courts of ^Etolia. 
A state conducted on these principles was likely to 
rouse enmity in every direction, and in B.C. 220 a war 
was declared against them by many states in Greece, 




which is sometimes called the " Social War," and 
lasted till July, B.C. 217 with the usual effect of 
bringing foreign intervention. 

was another league which had become by this time 
the best organised body in Greece. The ACH^EANS 
had always enjoyed a reputation for moderation and 
honesty, and from very early times formed a league 
of twelve cities. During the troubles of the Pelo- 
ponnesian war they had been forced to join Athens 
and Sparta alternately ; but at its end regained some 



sort of independence. In the Macedonian period 
(about B.C. 359-285) the League was dissolved and 
the several cities were garrisoned by Macedonian 
troops, or fell under the power of some tyrant in the 
Macedonian interest, the jealousy of Sparta often 
co-operating with their oppressors. But the time of 
Macedonia's greatest weakness (B.C. 284-280) was 

i I 



seized upon by four towns to renew the League. 
They were shortly joined by three others, and this 
league of seven cities existed quietly till B.C. 255. 
The general nature of the tie was a common system 
of coinage, of weights and measures, a common 
mbly which elected two Strategi to command 
a joint army in case of attack. After B.C. 255 there 


was only one Strategus with a vice-president or 
hypo-Strategus, a hipparch to command the cavalry, 
and a navarch to command a squadron of ten ships 
which was maintained by the League. 

The next step in the history of the League was 
the adhesion of Sicyon under the influence of Aratus, 
who may be regarded almost as its second founder 
(B.C. 251-245). One after another the chief towns in 
the Peloponnese were freed from their Macedonian 
garrisons, or their pro-Macedonian tyrants, and by 
B.C. 229 the League included two-thirds of the 
Peloponnese — Laconia, Messenia, and Elis standing 
aside. The most determined opponent was Sparta, 
under its reforming king Cleomenes III. ; for the 
ascendency of the Achseans was not only a blow to 
Spartan prestige, but it prevented the recovery of its 
seaports. The ^Etolians were on the side of Sparta, 
because they hoped to share in the spoil if the 
League were broken up. They were accused by 
Polybius of intrigue with Antigonus Gonatas, King of 
Macedonia (B.C. 277-239) and with Antigonus Doson 
(B.C. 229-220) to secure their interference in the 
affairs of the Peloponnese against the Achaeans. 

But after all it was the Achaean Aratus himself 
who brought the Macedonian arms into the fray. It 
had hitherto been the policy of Aratus to seek help 
rather from Egypt. About B.C. 250 Ptolemy II. had 
supplied him with 150 talents ; and in B.C. 240 
Ptolemy III. was nominated " General of the Achaean 
League by land and sea," and apparently assisted in 
the maintenance of the League fleet. When, there- 
fore, a series of mutual provocations issued in a war 


with Cleomenes of Sparta (B.C. 227-222), it was a 
reversal of all his previous policy for Aratus to ask 
the aid of Antigonus Doson. It alienated King 
Ptolemy (Euergetes), who began sending help to 
Cleomenes, and it, in the end, riveted the Macedonian 
yoke once more upon Greece, till it was superseded 
by that of Rome. 

The war thus began was a cause of much misery in 
the Peloponnese, and was at first wholly favourable 
to Cleomenes. But the complexion of affairs was 
changed, when Antigonus Doson arrived on the 
scene and was allowed to occupy the Acrocorinthus 
as his base (B.C. 224). From that time things went 
steadily wrong with Cleomenes, till after his defeat 
at Sellasia (B.C. 222) he fled to Alexandria and dis- 
appears from Greek history.. But the effect of the 
policy of Aratus was altogether evil. Antigonus, 
indeed, " restored " the ancient constitution at Sparta, 
but it lasted only two years, and was succeeded by a 
series of tyrannies, which hampered progress much 
more than the opposition of the Spartan constitu- 
tional kings. The Achaean League, too, had had 
to concede the permanent occupation of the 
Acrocorinthus — one of the "fetters" of Greece — and 
of Orchomenus, in Arcadia, by Macedonian garrisons, 
and to agree not to apply for aid to any other 
sovereign. The fatal result of this policy was shown 
under the next Macedonian king. 

Antigonus was succeeded in B.C. 220, by Philip V. 
(of whom he had been rightfully only guardian) a 
young man who soon showed that his ambition was 
not to be satisfied by anything less than complete 


ascendency in Greece, and whose policy was the 
direct cause of the advent of the Romans. The 
districts of Greece which had, during the Cleomenic 
war, formed some kind of alliance, were Achaia, 
Epirus, Phocis, Bceotia, Acarnania, Thessaly — under 
the hegemony, that is, of Macedonia. It was, indeed, 
not a measure of Greek unity, but of Macedonian 
influence. They, with the addition of the King of 
Bithynia, are still found to form the Macedonian 
alliance, when in B.C. 205 Philip was compelled to 
sign the armistice with Rome at Phcenice. All these 
states now had grievances against the yEtolians, 
which culminated in a joint declaration of war at 
Corinth, after Aratus, who was an able statesman but 
a poor military commander, had sustained a severe 
reverse at Caphyae. The professed object of the war 
was to restore to the several allies what had been 
violently taken from them by the ^Etolians ; to free 
those states which had been forcibly united to the 
^Etolian League, and to restore their free constitu- 
tions ; and lastly, to emancipate the temple of 
Delphi and the Amphictyonic Council from ^Etolian 

This "social war" lasted till B.C. 217, and its 
beginning synchronised with disturbances at many 
points in the Hellenic world. A revolution at Sparta 
gave Lycurgus the opportunity of getting rid of his 
king-colleague and securing the sole power for him- 
self, in which he and his successors maintained the 
policy of bitter hostility to the Achaeans. A war 
for the possession of Palestine was on the point of 
breaking out between Antiochus III. (of Syria) and 


Ptolemy IV. of Egypt ; and a brief naval war did 
actually begin between Rhodes and Byzantium on 
account of the heavy dues imposed upon the corn 
ships at the Bosporus by the latter. Future com- 
binations were foreshadowed by the grouping of 
allies in this war. Byzantium was joined by Attalus 
of Pergamus and Achaeus — a cousin of Antiochus, 
and properly Satrap of Asia Minor, who had assumed 
the title of king and set up his court at Sardis. The 
Rhodians were assisted by Prusias, King of Bithynia, 
whose position gave him the power of blocking one 
end of the Bosporus and of invading territories of 
Byzantium in Mysia. Rhodes was thus acting as a 
champion of the interests of Greek commerce as 
Athens had done in old days. Her help was asked 
in two other directions about the same period — in 
Crete where violent dissensions were raging which 
ended in the destruction of the town of Lyttos ; and 
in Sinope, which was threatened by Mithradates IV. 
of Pontus. This was the beginning of the extension 
of the kingdom of Pontus, and the design was con- 
summated by the next King Pharnaces seizing Sinope 
and making it his capital. This same year (B.C. 219) 
witnessed the beginning of the second struggle 
between Rome and Carthage, one of the far-reaching 
effects of which was to bring the Romans to Greece 
and Asia Minor. 

It was then a critical period for Greece in many 
directions. The one important state which was 
standing aloof from these disturbances, and joined 
neither -.^tolian nor Achaean, was Athens, which 
a few years before had regained its freedom, 


had got rid of its Macedonian garrison, and was 
enjoying a brief period of prosperity, its harbour once 
more secured, and its walls rebuilt. It had made an 
unsuccessful but gallant attempt to secure this 
freedom from Antigonus Gonatas in B.C. 263 (the 
Chremonidean war), but in B.C. 229, on the death of 
Demetrius II., Diogenes, the commander of the 
Macedonian garrison, gave up the forts to the 
citizens, and was commemorated as a benefactor 
for many centuries — -his name still surviving on one 
of the seats in the theatre, while a gymnasium, called 
to Aioytvuov, was frequented till quite late times. 
According to one story, Aratus supplied the money 
which was paid to Diogenes ; and Athens, though it 
did not join the Achaean League, took no part against 
it in the social war. But in the troubles that followed 
Athens looked to Attalus of Pergamus as offering the 
most profitable alliance, and therefore — though not 
displaying much activity — she is found among those 
states opposed to Achaia and Macedonia, which 
looked for protection to Rome. 

The social war (B.C. 220-217), though it witnessed 
no great actions and settled no questions, had the 
result of giving Philip of Macedonia a decisive 
ascendency in Greece. In B.C. 217 he hastily 
patched up a peace on hearing of the Roman 
defeat at lake Trasimene, because he hoped that in 
alliance with Hannibal, and with the aid of Illyrian 
seamen, he might invade Italy and revive the old 
dream of a Western Empire. This involved a war 
with Rome, which lasted in a desultory way for ten 
years (B.C. 215-205), and created a division in the 


Hellenic world. Philip, up to the end of the social 
war, though receiving his own interests, had kept the 
confidence of the Greeks generally, or at any rate of 
the Achaean League. But after that time he had lost 
that confidence, was believed to have got rid of 
Aratus by poison, and had committed various out- 
rages in Messenia and Elis. However, when it came 
to be a question of siding with Macedonia or Rome, 
as it did in B.C. 211, when the ^Etolians made a treaty 
of alliance with the Romans, the Achaean League 
stood by Macedonia, and were followed by the 
Boeotians, Phocians, Locrians, and Eubceans, and 
by the Western peoples of Epirus and Acarnania, and 
certain Illyrian princes. So in the East, Prusias of 
Bithynia stood by his relative, Philip, while Attalus 
of Pergamus joined the Roman alliance (B.C. 211). 

In the years that followed this arrangement Philip 
was not by any means always unsuccessful. He more 
than once defeated the ^Etolians ; once even repulsed 
a detachment of Roman troops near Sicyon ; foiled 
Attalus, King of Pergamus, in an attack upon 
Eubcea ; and by instigating Prusias to attack Per- 
gamene territory, forced Attalus to abstain from the 
naval operations which he was carrying on in con- 
junction with Roman ships, using ^Egina, which he 
had purchased, as his base. The details of the next 
two years of fighting (B.C. 207-6) are obscure. We 
find the sea-powers, Rhodes, Byzantium and Chios, 
more than once vainly attempting to intervene and 
make peace, in which they were sometimes joined with 
Egypt. These offered mediations are an indication 
of how annoying and ruinous to peaceful trade the 


disturbed state of Greece was — kept up by the fears 
of the Achaean League (now managed chiefly by 
Philopcemen) of attacks by the tyrants of Sparta or 
the hostile ^Etolians, and cunningly fomented by 
Philip of Macedonia. To the Egyptians it was the 
cause of great financial loss. They had for some 
time seen the advantage of securing the corn trade 
with Italy. In B.C. 274, soon after the failure of the 
invasion of Pyrrhus, Ptolemy the Second had sent an 
embassy to Rome offering his friendship, which was 


eagerly accepted, with the result that in the First 
Punic War the Egyptian Government remained 
neutral and refused to supply the Carthaginians 
with corn. So now (B.C. 210-9) the Romans, when 
the Hannibalian invasion had nearly produced a 
famine in Italy, applied to the court of Egypt for 
corn, as being almost the only country in which war 
was not raging. Thus the eyes of all were turned to 
the West, and the wise saw that from Italy would 
come the final decision of all their disputes. But 
Greece was not of one mind. As of old, while some 


thought that by uniting with a strong quasi-Hellenic 
power like Macedonia the " cloud from the West " 
might be kept off, others preferred their local 
autonomies and precarious alliances. The result 
was again the same — that all fell alike under a 
great united power. 

Peace, indeed, was made in B.C. 205 ; but it only 
gave Philip opportunity for fresh encroachments and 
provocations, and his policy brought into the arena 
another sovereign — Antiochus the Great, king of 
Syria, who had secured complete control of all Asia 
this side Taurus in B.C. 214 by the capture and 
death of his cousin Achseus, and since then had 
been on a seven years' expedition into Upper Asia, 
beyond the Hindu-Kush, and had reduced to 
obedience the satraps of a vast region (B.C. 212- 
205). Foiled for a time in his ambitions in Greece and 
the West, Philip turned his eyes to the East, and 
made an agreement with Antiochus to partition the 
outlying dominions of the infant King of Egypt, 
Ptolemy V., who had just succeeded. In pursuance 
of this agreement Antiochus at once occupied Pales- 
tine, long a bone of contention between the Syrian 
and Egyptian sovereigns ; defeated Scopas, the 
iEtolian general in the service of Egypt, at Panium, 
near the sources of the Jordan ; and contemplated 
the subjection of Cyrene and Egypt itself. Philip, 
for his part, proceeded to occupy those Egyptian 
dominions which had been taken over by Ptolemy 
at the division of the Thracian kingdom at the death 
of Lysimachus in B.C. 281 — that is, the Thracian 
Chersonese, certain cities in Asia Minor, and the 


islands of the ^Egean Sea. He went in person to 
the Chersonese and Asia, while he sent Dicaearchus 
with a fleet to seize the Cyclades, and an agent, 
named Heracleides, to prevent the interference of 
the Rhodians by inciting the Cretans to make war 
on them, and by treacherously setting fire to their 
arsenal and ships. These proceedings brought on 
him the enmity of Attalus of Pergamus, Rhodes, and 
Athens, and enraged the yEtolians, with whom he 
had shortly before come to some understanding, 
because three of the towns he first seized — Lysi- 
macheia, at the head of the Chersonese, Chalcedon, 
and Cius, in Bithynia — were members of their 
league. Rhodes had vainly tried to save Cius, 
and Attalus had watched the movement with great 
apprehension, and in B.C. 201, as he was extending 
his conquests southward, both proclaimed war with 
Philip. Though he promptly invaded Pergamene 
territory, and his ships were partly successful off 
Chios and Lade, and he himself penetrated to Caria, 
thus threatening the Rhodian Peraea, yet the repaired 
fleets of Attalus, Byzantium, and Rhodes were able 
to shut him off from returning to Macedonia during 
the ensuing winter, as the news of dangers at home 
made him anxious to do. He managed, however, to 
evade the hostile ships in the spring of B.C. 200. 

But the Nemesis was at hand. Attalus from 
/Egina went to Athens, where he was received with 
the greatest enthusiasm ; an alliance with him and 
Rhodes was voted by acclamation, and certain 
Roman commissioners who happened to be at 
Athens took advantage of the popular feeling to 

Photo] [Bruckmann. 




enrol Athens among the " friends of Rome." This 
was again and again the first step to a Roman pro- 
tectorate, merging in Roman annexation. And, in 
fact, the Roman government had resolved to inter- 
vene. The disorders in the Greek world were regarded 
as a danger to their commerce in the Mediterranean, 
and a kind of Philhellenism became the fashion at 
Rome, never standing in the way of active measures 
of suppression or extension, yet never quite insin- 
cere. A free Egypt, as a free Greece, seemed now 
of supreme importance, and the Roman government 
promptly answered to the appeal from Alexandria 
for help against Antiochus, and from the Greek 
states for aid against Philip. War was resolved 
upon against the king of Macedonia early in B.C. 
200. At first this only led. to fresh miseries in 
Greece. Philip sent a strong force into Attica, 
overran in person the Chersonese, and, crossing the 
Hellespont, laid siege to Abydos. Here he was met 
with the Roman ultimatum — demanding that he 
should refrain from attacking any Greek city or any 
place belonging to Ptolemy, and submit to arbi- 
tration the indemnity claimed by Attalus and the 

But though the Roman commissioners travelled 
through Greece assuring the towns that joined the 
Roman alliance that they would be protected, and 
though a Roman consul and a consular army landed 
in Epirus in the autumn of B.C. 200, for two years 
little was done to redeem this promise. Philip went 
on his way unchecked : reduced Abydos, twice 
invaded and ravaged Attica (though prevented by 



a Roman squadron from taking the Piraeus and 
city), and passed into the Peloponnese to secure the 
loyalty of the Achaean League ; and next year sur- 
prised and defeated an ^Etolian force which was 
invading Thessaly under Roman auspices. Among 
the islands of the ^Egean, however, the presence 
of the combined Roman and Pergamene fleet, sta- 
tioned at ^Egina, did give substantial protection, 
and forced the expulsion of many Macedonian garri- 
sons. Still, there seemed some paralysing influence 
upon the Roman force in Epirus. A second consul 
succeeded the first, and ambassadors from various 
states crowded the Roman camp with complaints 
and anxious questions. 

It was not until the arrival of T. Quinctius 
Flamininus, in the spring of B.C. 198, that the 
king's position on the Aous was turned, and the 
Roman army was marching on the heels of Philip 
as he fled through Thessaly to Tempe. Flamininus, 
however, presently turned south, and marched through 
Bceotia, receiving or taking town after town, and ex- 
pelling Macedonian garrisons. As he lay before 
Elateia he received the adhesion of the Achaean 
League, and by the time he went into winter quarters 
Argos and Corinth were almost the only places of 
importance in the south that still held by Philip 
and retained their Macedonian garrisons, while Nabis, 
the tyrant of Sparta, was waiting to see which side 
it would serve him best to join. But in Central 
Greece Demetrias and Chalcis were still in the 
king's hands. All these, however, were lost to him 
next year (B.C. 197), when, after long conferences and 


a fruitless appeal to the Senate, the war was renewed, 
and Philip was utterly beaten in the autumn at 
Cynoscephala^ in Thessaly. 

The battle was decisive, and it was not an isolated 
event. In other parts of Greece, about the same 
time, the Macedonian cause had received a series of 
blows. The Rhodians had re-possessed themselves 
of their Perrea in Caria ; the troops of the Achaeans 
had defeated the Macedonian commander at Acro- 
corinthus ; and the Acarnanians had been forced to 
submit by a Roman fleet. The question for Greeks 
was whether the victory at Cynoscephalae meant 
recovered freedom or a change of masters. There 
had been Greeks fighting on both sides, as usual, 
and to neither was the answer clear. One state 
quickly showed its dissatisfaction. The ^Etolians 
gave themselves annoying airs over their part in 
the victory, and had shown great cupidity in appro- 
priating plunder. When Philip, recognising his 
position, had agreed to evacuate all Greek towns, 
the yEtolians claimed the restoration of those in 
Thessaly and elsewhere which had once belonged to 
their league ; but Flamininus laid down the prin- 
ciple that towns which had voluntarily surrendered 
to Rome were under the protection of the Senate, and 
could only be disposed of by it. Only those which 
had resisted and had been captured were, accord- 
ing to the terms of the treaty of B.C. 211, to pass 
back to the ^Etolians. This confirmed their discon- 
tent, which had already been roused by the 
terms granted to Philip. They had hoped for the 
dismembering of Macedonia, and the consequent 


extension of their own dominions in Acarnania and 
Epirus. At present, however, the Roman view was 
to maintain the kingdom of Macedonia as a buffer- 
state against surrounding barbarians, though it was 
to be confined to its natural frontiers. The Senate 
decided that, generally speaking, all Greek cities in 
Europe or Asia were to be free and autonomous 
Those in Asia, still occupied by Philip, were to be 
set free at once. Those in Europe were to be handed 
over before the next Isthmian Games (July) to the 
ten commissioners, who were sent to Greece and 
were to determine their status. This distinction was 
made because the Senate did not mean at present 
to have any responsibility in Asia, while in Greece 
it would be a question for the commissioners to 
decide whether the cities should or should not have 
a Roman garrison, especially the three " fetters " — 
Demetrias, Chalcis, and Acrocorinthus. 

It was the decision of this point that was awaited 
with such anxiety and received with such enthusiasm 
at the next Isthmian Games. This first plan drawn 
up by Roman officials (no doubt much inspired by 
Flamininus) for the settlement of Greece deserves to 
be carefully studied. It was honestly intended, with- 
out any thought of annexation, and was founded on 
the principle of respecting existing combinations 
when they corresponded with natural divisions, but 
discouraging the government of isolated towns in 
one district by another and distant state. It related 
only to those parts of Greece which had been held 
by Macedonia either in full sovereignty or by garri- 
sons professedly stationed in them for their pro- 


tection. Of the rest of Greece — trie Achaean and 
the vEtolian Leagues, Athens, Sparta — there was 
no question in this particular award. But as to the 
districts which had been in possession of Philip and 
had now come into that of Rome, the future was 
uncertain, and therefore the crowd attending the 
games waited in breathless expectation for the 
herald's proclamation, made by order of Flamininus. 
It declared, in the name of the Senate and the Pro- 
consul, " the following people free, in full enjoyment 
of the laws of their respective countries : Corinthians, 
Phocians, Locrians, Eubceans, Achaeans of Phthiotis, 
Magnesians, Thessalians, Perrhaebians." The ex- 
citable people in their joy almost crushed Flamininus 
to death in trying to grasp his hands and cover him 
with garlands. But, after all, this proclamation only 
announced a general principle ; the commissioners 
still had details to settle. Phocis and Locris were 
allowed to rejoin the iEtolian League, and certain 
towns in the Peloponnese the Achaean League. 
Thessaly was to consist of four confederations — one 
called Thessaly, the others Perrhaebians, Dolopes, 
and Magnesians. Finally, some rectifications of the 
western frontier of Macedonia were made in favour 
of certain Illyrian princes who had stood by Rome. 
The settlement was completed next year by a joint 
attack upon Nabis, tyrant of Sparta, in which 
Eumenes, the King of Pergamus, the Rhodians, 
and King Philip took part. The harbour town of 
Gytheium was taken, and Nabis was obliged to 
r acuate Argos, surrender his ships, restore exiles, 
>andon all claims to govern towns outside Laconia, 


and pay a large war indemnity. At the following 
Nemaean Games, Argos was proclaimed free and re- 
joined the Achaean League. Finally, Flamininus, on 
his return to Italy, in B.C. 194, put a finishing touch 
upon his work of liberation by withdrawing the 
Roman garrisons from Demetrias, Chalcis, and Acro- 

The settlement seemed an equitable one and likely 
to be lasting, because it was founded on natural divi- 
sions and a respect for established facts, and involved 
no interference with local institutions. But from the 
very first there were two points of danger and dis- 
content — Sparta and ^Etolia. The tyrant of Sparta 
naturally resented the loss of all access to the sea ; 
and the yEtolians were annoyed by not being 
allowed to reunite distant league states, especially 
Leucadia and Pharsalus, and at not having been 
commissioned to put down Nabis, and thus re-possess 
themselves of their larger towns in Arcadia. A 
disturbance in Bceotia, which had Macedonian sym- 
pathies, issuing in the murder of Roman soldiers and 
consequent severities by Flamininus, and the pre- 
sence of Roman commissioners in Thessaly, where 
the details of settlement occupied some years, gave 
them a pretext for saying that Greece had only 
gained a change of masters. They were, in fact, 
determined upon the usual policy of discontented 
states in Greece — to call in the help of a foreign 
power. They selected Antiochus of Syria, whom 
we heard of last as having occupied Palestine as his 
share of the dominions of Egypt which he and 
Philip had agreed to partition. Since then he had 


taken up some of the work which Philip had been 
obliged to abandon, and had occupied the Egyptian 
protectorates in Caria and the Thracian Chersonese. 
He then gave his daughter Cleopatra in marriage 
to Ptolemy, with the revenues of Ccele-Syria and 
Palestine as her dower. He thus had established a 
kind of right to the cities of Caria and the Chersonese, 
and at any rate had prevented the fear of an appeal 
from Egypt to Rome against him. Nevertheless the 
Romans had remonstrated against his encroachment 
upon the Chersonese, and had told him at last that, 
if he did not quit Europe, they would free the Greek 
cities in Asia from him (B.C. 193). 

But Antiochus had many reasons for not yielding 
to these threats. First, he had received the applica- 
tion of the ^Etolians, who assured him that if he 
would come to Greece there would be a rising in the 
Peloponnese, headed by Nabis, in Bceotia, and other 
parts of Central Greece, and that Philip of Mace- 
donia would gladly seize the opportunity of shaking 
off the supremacy of Rome. Again, there had just 
arrived in Ephesus the greatest general of the day 
and the most implacable enemy of Rome, Hannibal 
the Carthaginian, driven into exile by the unworthy 
jealousy of the Roman government. Hannibal held 
out an alluring prospect of inducing his fellow- 
countrymen to renew the war when the Romans 
were hampered by the rising in the East. Lastly, 
his past successes in Central Asia and Palestine had 
given Antiochus confidence in his power and fortune. 
Nor was it only as a victor that he had gained men's 
good word. He had known how to conciliate as well 


as to conquer, had respected Jewish laws and cus- 
toms, and had assured Greek cities that he would 
issue no orders that were contrary to their laws. 
Therefore, though appeals went to Rome from some 
cities, such as Smyrna, Alexandria Troas, and 
Lampsacus, there does not seem to have been any 
widespread dissatisfaction with his rule in the cities 
of Asiatic Hellas. 

When at last, however, he did cross to Greece and 
land at Demetrias, he found none of the fair hopes 
which had been held out to him in the way of fulfil- 
ment. The Carthaginians, even if they wished it, 
were prevented from stirring by the ever-present 
hostility of Massanasa, who could always reckon on 
the support of Rome. Nabis of Sparta had fallen by 
the treachery of the yEtolians, whose help he had 
asked against the Achaean League, and Sparta had 
been added to the League by Philopcemen. The 
^Etolians, indeed, had prepared for the coming of 
Antiochus by seizing Demetrias, and, summoning a 
conference at Lamia, got him proclaimed "general" 
of the League. But the expected rising did not take 
place. The Boeotians hesitated, the Achaeans re- 
jected his proposals, and almost the only people who 
openly joined him were the insignificant Athamanes. 
So far from joining Antiochus, Philip of Macedonia, 
who was threatened by a pretender in the person of a 
brother-in-law of the king of the Athamanes, was 
actively assisting the Romans. It is true that after 
his capture of Chalcis there seemed for a brief space 
some hope. In the winter of B.C. 192-191 messages 
of sympathy, and sometimes active adhesion came 


from Elis, Epirus, and Boeotia. In the latter the 
king was received personally with enthusiasm, and 
commissioners from some of the towns in Thessaly 
attended a conference with him at Demetrias. But 
the friendly states more often had need of help from 
him than ability to furnish any ; and on the whole 
he must have felt that the idea of leading a united 
Greece was hopeless. Such alliances as he had been 
able to form collapsed next spring (B.C. 191) when a 
Roman army marched through Thessaly, receiving the 
submission of city after city. Antiochus had spent the 
winter at Chalcis, and now tried to block the famous 
pass of Thermopylae against the Roman advance ; 
but being utterly defeated there, he escaped by sea 
to Ephesus and never returned. His intervention 
had been useless to Greece, and was in the near 
future to prove disastrous to himself. All parts of 
Greece relapsed into their former submissiveness, 
and hardly any severities were employed by the 
consul Acilius to the states which had favoured 

But the yEtolians would not give in. An ^tolian 
force stood a long siege at Heracleia, just north of 
Thermopylae, and their main army was strongly 
posted at Naupactus. A year went by with indeci- 
sive sieges and protracted negotiations, during which 
the only gainer was Philip of Macedon, who was 
entrusted with the reduction of revolted cities in 
Thessaly, and was rewarded by the remission of his 
war indemnity and the restoration of his supremacy 
in part, at any rate, of that district. The Romans 
felt sure of being able to settle the ^Etolian question 


whenever they chose, and gave all their energies for 
the present to crush Antiochus, whose high talk of a 
second expedition into Greece was partly responsible 
for the obstinacy of the ^tolian resistance. The 
king's fleet was defeated in the autumn of B.C. 191 
off Phocaea, but in the spring of the next year it 
gained a victory over the Rhodians, while the Roman 
fleet was detained some time with the blockade of 
Abydos. Things seemed promising for the king at 
first, his son Seleucus carried all before him in 
yEolis, and he himself, at the head of a large army, 
occupied the territory of Pergamus. 

But a Roman army was on its way, commanded 
by L. Scipio, assisted by his famous brother Afri- 
canus ; and whilst waiting to fight this army the 
king's fortune at sea went from bad to worse. 
Hannibal, with a Phoenician fleet, was defeated by 
the Rhodians ; his own fleet was beaten with great 
loss in the bay of Teos ; Phocaea was captured by 
the Roman ships ; and there was no chance of pre- 
venting the Scipios from crossing the Hellespont. 
The battle of Magnesia, late in B.C. 190, ended all 
his hopes. His army was cut to pieces, and he and 
his son with difficulty escaped to Sardis. He was 
obliged to submit to any terms the Romans chose 
to demand. They included an immense war indem- 
nity and the abandonment of his authority in Asia 
this side of Taurus. It was a repetition of the so- 
called treaty of Callias in B.C. 452 : Asiatic Greece was 
no longer to be under an Eastern sovereign. But 
times were changed, and the restoration of complete 
and separate independence to the cities proved to 


be impracticable, though that seems to have been the 
first idea of the Romans, and was suggested by 
Rhodian envoys. 

Eventually the usual commission of ten senators 
arrived, and after listening to various claimants made 
their award : (i) Those parts of Asia Minor which 
had belonged to Antiochus in full sovereignty were 
to belong to Eumenes of Pergamus, except Lycia 
and Caria south of the Maeander, which were to 
belong to Rhodes. (2) Of Greek cities such as had 
formerly paid tribute to the king of Pergamus and 
had been wrested from him were to pay their tribute 
as before ; those that had been originally inde- 
pendent but had been subjected by Antiochus were 
to recover their independence, and such as had been 
independent of either king throughout were to con- 
tinue independent. Thus the historic cities on the 
coast such as Miletus, Cyme, Clazomenae, Smyrna, and 
islands such as Chios, became independent ; Rhodes 
recovered the Peraea in Caria, and had added to it 
Lycia in full sovereignty. But the greatest gainer 
was King Eumenes of Pergamus, who became 
sovereign of the Thracian Chersonese, of Phrygia, 
Mysia, Lycaonia, and Lydia, besides the rich trad- 
ing city of Ephesus, with Tralles and Telmessus. 

Pergamus thus became a strong and wealthy king- 
dom, and rivalled Alexandria as a centre of Greek 
letters and art. Eumenes II., who had succeeded 
his father in B.C. 197, continued his work in beautify- 
ing the city with splendid buildings and the best 
sculptures to be obtained. Some of the finest 
remains of ancient art that have survived were 


brought to Rome from Pergamus, such as the dying 
Gaul (called "the Dying Gladiator)," and the Belvi- 
dere Apollo. Eumenes also began the great library 
which contained 200,000 volumes, and was eventually 
transferred by Antony to Alexandria as a gift to 
Cleopatra after a great part of the Alexandrian 
library had been destroyed by fire. The sovereigns 
of Pergamus were enlightened men and apparently 
excellent rulers, and Asiatic Greece now enjoyed a 
brief period of peace and increasing wealth. 

European Greece was not so fortunate. The 
/Etolians were still in arms, nor did they give in 
until their capital, Ambracia, had stood a long and 
memorable siege. They then had to submit to be 
deprived of all annexations, to surrender all right to 
make additions to their League either by war or 
negotiation, and, in fact, to be a dependency of Rome 
without the right of having a foreign policy, though 
for internal purposes they retained their constitution 
(B.C. 187). ^Etolia ceases to count in Greek history 
from this time. Its population decreased, and its 
narrow territory — now bounded on the west by the 
River Achelous — seemed to lapse into barbarism. 
In Western Greece Ambracia and Acarnania were 
declared free states, but Corcyra was governed by a 
Roman praefectus, and the freedom of these states, 
as of the commonwealth of Epirus, was really on 
sufferance and at the mercy of Rome. 

Nor was the freedom of Southern Greece in much 
better case. The great achievement of Philopcemen j 
the last great soldier of the Achaean League, had been 
to compel Sparta to join the League, and so to make 


the term Achaia applicable to the whole Pelopon- 
nesus (B.C. 192). But Sparta was always an unwilling 
member, and its adhesion had been at the cost of 
more than one bloody revolution, in the course of 
which now one and now another party had been 
exiled. These exiles were always clamouring for 
restitution ; and at least four classes of them appeared 
by their representatives in Rome in B.C. 184. Philo- 
pcemen was murdered in B.C. 183, and Lycortas, the 
father of Polybius, became the most influential man 
in the League. His policy was to maintain inde- 
pendence by strictly adhering to the terms of their 
treaty with Rome, and thus to avoid the interference 
of Roman commissioners. But this implied internal 
union and loyalty and the observance of the rule — 
laid down in the treaty — that only legates from the 
Central League government were to go to Rome ; 
individual states were not to send any. But with 
members of the League discontented such embassies 
were sure to be sent covertly, if not openly ; and 
when the Senate saw reason to be displeased with 
the League these separate embassies were encouraged. 
Moreover, the party opposed to Lycortas was led by 
a certain Callicrates, whose policy was to promote 
the Roman interests and to make the control of 
Rome more complete. It was to him, then, that the 
Spartan exiles looked for help, and a statue-base 
exists at Olympia in which they record their grati- 
tude for his success in securing their recall, which 
could only be done by appeal to the Roman Senate. 
Achaia was a house divided against itself. 
Elsewhere in Greece there were also many signs of 


restlessness. In Thessaly Philip's hold on certain 
cities, connived at by Rome, was being resisted. In 
Bceotia, as in Sparta, there were disputes about the 
recall of exiles and signs that the Boeotian League 
preferred Macedonia to Rome. In the East the 
Lycians resented being subjects, when they believed 
that they were meant by the Roman award to be 
allies, of Rhodes, and were more than once in armed 
rebellion. These troubles led to constant and weari- 
some appeals to the Roman Senate, and eventually 
the renewal of war with Macedonia put an end to the 
farce of Greek independence, with its endless bicker- 
ings. This war had become inevitable. King Philip 
was extending his power in Thrace, sometimes by 
acts of great cruelty, thus coming into collision with 
the King of Pergamus, who governed the Thracian 
Chersonese ; he was interfering in the affairs of the 
Illyrian princes, and was endeavouring once more 
to make a party for himself in Greece. These pro- 
ceedings were jealously watched in Rome, and the 
king was irritated by frequent commissioners that 
visited Macedonia or parts of Greece and Thrace, 
where he was believed to be intriguing. His younger 
son Demetrius, who had visited Rome as his father's 
agent, was so ostentatiously patronised by them that 
Perseus was able, by false representations, so to 
inflame his father's suspicions that he at last con- 
sented to his death. The unhappy man never held 
up his head again ; and though he continued working 
against the Roman influence, he died in B.C. 179, 
before an outbreak actually occurred. But his son 
Perseus succeeded to his policy as well as to the 


wealth and warlike stores which his father had 

Very soon after the accession of Perseus rumours 
spread through Greece of a change for the better in 
the government of Macedonia, from which advantages 
might be hoped. A young and vigorous sovereign 
had mounted the throne, who, while renewing his 
father's treaty with Rome, yet let it be understood 
that he wished to identify himself with Greek interests 
and Greek ideas. He at once made advances to the 
Achaeans for the removal of the mutual prohibition 
of the citizens of the one country visiting the territory 
of the other. As time went on instances of attempts 
to assert his power by force or favour in Thessaly 
and other parts of Greece accumulated. A civil 
contest broke out in Bceotia, in which the leaders of 
the Romanising party were killed (B.C. 171) ; in the 
previous year (B.C. 172), Eumenes, King of Pergamus, 
had visited Rome and had reported in strong terms 
on the progress which Perseus was making in Bceotia, 
yEtolia, and Thrace, and his life was attempted on 
his way home. The usual despatch of commissioners 
followed with irritating frequency, whose presence 
was resented by Perseus, and whose reports caused 
great uneasiness at Rome, till at length war was 
declared in B.C. 175 and was only ended by the 
battle of Pydna in B.C. 168, the capture of the king 
and the division of Macedonia into four districts, in 
which the inhabitants had no right of residence or 
ownership in any but their own division. And though 
these districts were nominally independent, they were 
fettered by so many conditions and prohibitions, as, 


for instance, in regard to working mines or felling 
timber for ships, that they were in effect in a worse 
position than any province. They were subjects 
without a subject's privileges. 

But the effects of this war with Perseus on the 
Greek world were scarcely less disastrous. In the 
first year Perseus had gained some substantial 
successes in cavalry skirmishes on the Peneus. All 
the states which recently cherished a wish for a 
revived Macedonia as a counterpoise to Rome, were 
tempted by these successes to show their colours. 
The movement, says Polybius, " spread like a fire." 
It was specially strong in Bceotia, ^Etolia, and 
Epirus ; but even some of Rome's most trusted 
allies were suspected — as Eumenes, king of 
Pergamus, and the Rhodians ; and though the 
Achaean Government had not committed itself to 
any breach of its treaty with Rome, there was a 
strong nationalist party in the League, whom the 
Romans chose to regard with suspicion. 

On the defeat of Perseus, therefore, the hand of 
Rome fell heavily upon many parts of Greece. 
Eumenes, in paying a visit of congratulation, was 
abruptly told to quit Italy, and his brother Attalus 
was ostentatiously promoted and honoured, while 
Prusias of Bithynia was instigated to annoy him by 
frontier disputes. But the royal family of Pergamus 
was distinguished by family affection, and Eumenes 
seems to have survived till B.C. 157, without any 
quarrel with his brother and successor. A more 
practical punishment was inflicted on Rhodes, its 
dependencies in Caria and Lycia being declared free, 


while its finances were injured by the recognition of 
Delos as a free port. This diverted the passage of 
ships between Greece and Asia, and at once seriously 
diminished the harbour dues, on which the revenue 
of the Rhodians had greatly depended. In Greece 
proper, though no Roman province was created, 
yet the whole country was made to feel its sub- 
ordination. Epirus, as having openly favoured Perseus 
suffered worst. Not only was the League govern- 
ment dissolved, but all its cities were stripped of 

'■■ » 


their wealth and fortifications. More than 150,000 
persons are said to have been sold into slavery, and 
whole districts were left desolate and uncultivated. 
The Boeotian League was also dissolved, and some 
of the most disaffected cities practically demolished. 
The Achaean League was not formally dissolved, 
but complaints against it by Sparta or other dis- 
contented members were encouraged, and 1,000 
members of the nationalist party were ordered to go 
to Italy and await trial. The same was done in 
other parts of Greece. These men were detained in 



various cities in Italy and never brought to trial till 
their numbers had diminished to about 300, when 
they were allowed to return as no longer dangerous 
(B.C. 151). 

Their return, however, presently involved the 
entire dissolution of the League. For one of the 
restored exiles named Diaeus was elected Strategus 
for B.C. 150-149, and by an ill-judged quarrel with 
Sparta brought upon the League first the loss of 
Sparta and then that of Corinth, Argos, and 
Orchomenus in Arcadia, by the order of Roman com- 
missioners. The Strategus of that year (B.C. 147), 
Critolaus, was a violent anti-Romanist, and persuaded 
the cities of the League to resist this order and to 
enrol troops. In the spring of B.C. 146, he was 
able to occupy Thermopylae in considerable force. 
But there was a Roman consul and army in 
Macedonia which, after the defeat of various pre- 
tenders, was being reduced to the form of a single 
Roman province, the quadruple division being 
abolished. Metellus, who was in command of this 
army in Macedonia, marched quietly down the 
country and defeated Critolaus, who perished in 
some unknown way after the battle. His predecessor, 
Discus, according to the League law, became at once 
Strategus, and he determined to continue the resist- 
ance, fortifying himself in Corinth. There he was so 
utterly defeated by the successor of Metellus, L. 
Mummius, that he fled to Megalopolis and took 
poison, while Corinth was given up to pillage and 
fire. Its treasures of art which were saved from the 
flames or the ignorant destruction of the soldiers 


were transported to Rome, and the town itself was 
reduced to ruins and remained a mere village till 
recolonised by Julius Caesar. 

This was the end of Greek independence ; but 
Greece was not as vet made into a Roman province. 
The system pursued was to abolish all leagues and 
to treat each city and its immediate territory as a 
separate and distinct entity with a local constitution 
of its own. Ten Commissioners visited the Pelo- 
ponnese, now often called Achaia, and drew up a 
lex or charter for each city, assisted by Polybius the 
historian and son of Lycortas, who was commissioned 
to explain to each city the terms granted to it. So 
in other parts of Greece — as in Attica and the 
islands. Greece was in effect not one but many 
provinces, and Cicero enumerates among the "pro- 
vinces " of the Roman people, Achaia, Thessalia, 
Bceotia, Lacedajmonii, Athenienses. Some cities 
were in a better position than others — such as 
Athens, Sparta, Sicyon — which did not pay tribute. 
Their status depended on former treaties made with 
them as sovereign states. But all alike were under 
the direction of Rome in regard to external relations 
and the right of going to war : and for certain 
purposes all alike were subject to the governors of 
Macedonia, who could levy soldiers in them. In 
Northern Greece the greater part of Epirus and 
Thessaly were united to the province of Macedonia. 
ilia was desolate and neglected, but in most of the 
districts large tracts of lands were made ager publicus ; 
that is, the property of the Roman people, who 
received a regular rent from their occupiers. This 


was the case with all Euboea and Boeotia, and the 
territory of Corinth ; some of which last, however, 
was granted to Sicyon on condition of keeping up 
the Isthmian games. Some of the smaller states 
were for special reason excused the payment of 
tribute, but as a general rule every community 
recognised as a state paid a fixed sum to the Roman 

Thus Greece, which the course of events since 
the death of Alexander had brought into line with 
the Hellenistic kingdoms of Egypt, Syria, Perga- 
mus, and Macedonia was now joined to the Roman 
system, destined before long to absorb the first three 
of these as it had already done the last. Greece 
cannot be said to have flourished in this new position. 
Population went down ; what had once been im- 
portant cities became mere villages, and most of the 
active and vigorous men who survived sought em- 
ployment elsewhere, either as soldiers, or physicians, 
or teachers, or artists. Hellenism flourished at 
Pergamus, Antioch, and above all at Alexandria, 
rather than in Greece ; and though Greek culture 
survived and deeply affected the conquering race, 
the Greeks themselves ceased to be regarded as of 
weight in the political history of the world. Still, 
some of the characteristic features of Greek life 
survived. The great games were still largely 
attended, though the Romans rather despised them ; 
the Amphictyonic League still existed, though 
with much diminished importance, and the oracles 
were still consulted. Athens not only retained the 
glamour of its great past, but was still a well-fortified 


city and the home of philosophic schools, — maintained 
in part by legacies from the original founders or 
subsequent masters, — and was attended by young 
men of rank or wealth from all parts of the Empire. 
Certain towns attained or recovered some prosperity 
from being places of call in journeys between Italy 
and the East, such as Dyrrachium and Apollonia in 
Epirus, Patrae in the Peloponnese, Athens itself, and 
some of the islands, as Corcyra and Samos. Artisti- 
cally Greece suffered much from the Roman conquests. 
An immense amount of the finest works of art were 
transferred to Rome either by conquering generals or 
private collectors. Whole towns were stripped, as 
Syracuse and Tarentum, Corinth and Chalcis, 
Ambracia and all the cities of Epirus. But besides 
these and other wholesale robberies a steady drain 
went on as wealth got more into the hands of 
the Romans. Yet, as the remains still testify, 
much was left, and the traveller Pausanias (in the 
second century of our era) found enough in most parts 
of Greece to fill many pages of mere enumeration. 
Wherever the Roman power extended there was on 
the whole peace and a reign of law. Administra- 
tion of law involves the art of oratory, and accord- 
ingly we find both in European and Asiatic Greek 
this art still cultivated and in high repute, especially 
at Rhodes and in some cities in Asia Minor. Both 
Caesar and Cicero visited Rhodes to study in the 
rhetorical schools, and Cicero went to Asia Minor 
for the same purpose. There was thought to be a 
marked difference of style between the two. That 
of Rhodes was the purer and more classical, the 



oratory of Asiatic Greece was more elaborate and 
artificial ; but at any rate in this respect Greece was 
still the teacher ; and though material prosperity 
was diminished or destroyed, she still drew to her 
a large part of those who cared for art, science, or 

Photo] \Neurdein. 


25 ^mmm^d^^ 




Peaceful state of Greece after B.C. 146— Decay and poverty - Piracy in 
Greek waters —The kingdom of Pergamus becomes the Roman 
province of Asia, B.C. 131 — The prosperity of the Asiatic Greeks in 
spite of extortionate Roman magistrates — The disadvantages of the 
Roman rule — The merits of the Roman rule — Mithradates Eupator 
— Many Greeks join Mithradates, B.C. 88 — European Greece joins 
the movement against Rome, and Athens accepts the authority of 
Mithradates — Campaign of Sulla in Attica and the capture of 
Athens, B.C. 87 6 — Sulla's campaign in Bneotia, B.C. 86 — Greek 
cities in Asia return to their allegiance to Rome — The sufferings of 
the Greeks in Asia— Reforms of Lucullus in the Greek cities of 
Asia — Pompey's suppression of pirates and settlement of Asia — 
The Greeks during the civil wars of B.C. 49 to 32 — Julius Caesar's 
management of Greece — Athens adheres to M. Brutus, and after- 
wards to M. Antonius — The Greeks in Sicily — Augustus and 
Greece— The Greek dynasty in Egypt comes to an end, B.C. 30— 
The second arrangement of Greece by Augustus, B.C. 21-19 — 
Improved position of the provinces under the Emperor. 

After the settlement which followed the fall of 
Corinth in B.C. 146, Greece for the most part remained 
quietly obedient to its new masters. But the settle- 
ment itself was not the work of a day. The details 
involved long investigation and patient consideration. 
For some years to come there are traces in sur- 
viving inscriptions of awards made in regard to 



particular towns. Nor are there wanting indications 
of active resistance, especially to the limitation 
of the franchise which seems to have been every- 
where required, even in states nominally free. For 
instance, an inscription exists giving a copy of a 
despatch from the proconsul of Macedonia to the 
magistrates and people of Dyme in Achaia con- 
demning to death two men who had tried to 
abolish this property qualification, and, in order to 
secure that end, had set fire to the public records 
and registers. But such outbreaks were rare ; there 
was doubtless a period of peace such as the country 
had not known before. Even those states which 
were numerically free could only use troops in the 
service of Rome or subject to an appeal to Rome. 
Thus a few years before (B.C. 152) the Athenians 
had ventured to make a raid on the territory of 
Oropus. The people of Oropus promptly appealed 
to the Roman Senate, and the Senate commissioned 
the government of Sicyon to assess the damages, 
and when the amount assessed proved to be 
beyond their means, the Athenians had to send 
commissioners to plead before the Senate for its 
reduction. It was on this occasion that they were 
represented by the heads of the three chief philo- 
sophical schools, Carneades of the new Academy, 
Critolaus the Peripatetic, and Diogenes the Stoic— 
a significant fact as showing the importance of the 
literary class in the city. 

But though there was peace, it was in many cases 
the quiet of decay. Population, as already remarked, 
was dwindling, cities sank into villages, and poverty 


was everywhere apparent. Exceptions were generally 
those places which were on the line of route from 
West to East, such as Dyrrachium, Apollonia,Corcyra, 
and Patne. Above all, the destruction of Corinth 
and the assignment of Delos to Athens as a free 
port, gave the Athenians considerable wealth and 
importance for a time. A series of inscriptions 
discovered at Delos by French archaeologists has 
disclosed a curious history of the commercial impor- 
tance and activity of Delos. It was especially known 
for its market of slaves and bronzes. It was peopled 
by Athenian clerucks, and the " Commissioner of 
Delos " (£7rfjU£/V/r>7c) was the most important official 
at Athens, and had the best residence in the Piraeus. 
But the profits earned at Delos and the still existing 
mines at Laurium were the only source of revenue. 
The harbour of the Piraeus was empty, and though 
there was a war minister (o-r/jarrjyoe IttI ra o7rXa) it 
was with difficulty that troops were collected to 
suppress a rising of slaves in Attica and Delos 
about B.C. 132, brought about probably, as the nearly 
contemporary rising in Sicily, by the poverty as much 
as by the harshness of masters. 

Another hindrance to Hellenic prosperity was 
piracy. This had always existed in the Mediter- 
ranean even before the time of Homer. One of the 
professed purposes of the Confederacy of Delos 
of B.C. 476 had been to prevent its practice in the 
. lv^ean, and as long as the Athenian naval supre- 
macy lasted it was kept in check. Its subsequent 
reappearance is testified by inscriptions recording 
thanks to those sovereigns or generals who had done 


anything to suppress it. The fleets of the kings 
of Pergamus, of Syria, the ships maintained by a 
sort of island confederation which was renewed in 
Delos after the death of Alexander, and those of 
Rhodes and her allies, all did something to abate 
this nuisance. But the fatal weakening of all these 
naval powers by the Roman policy after B.C. 146 
had allowed piracy to break out again in an aggra- 
vated form. The number of the piratical ships 
constituted a formidable fleet, which swept round 
the coasts unhindered. Their chief haunts were, in 
the West, the islands fringing the Illyrian coast and 
the Balearic Islands ; in the East, Crete and the coast 
of Cilicia. As years went on, and poverty in Greece 
became more marked, it seems that many Greeks 
who in earlier and better times would have been in 
the active service of their state drifted into this way 
of life. In spite of the mischief and loss which 
they caused, the profession was regarded with a 
curious tolerance as something hardly in itself dis- 
honourable, and the various sovereigns were at 
times glad to avail themselves of the services of 
the pirates. It was not until well into the first 
century B.C. that the Romans seemed to wake to 
their responsibilities in regard to them, and to see 
that having practically taken over Greece in Europe 
and Asia it was their interest as well as their duty 
to put down this lawless trade. In the West, indeed, 
they had done something; the war with Queen Teuta 
and other princes (B.C. 229) had stopped for a time the 
Illyrian pirates; and in B.C. 123 the Balearic Islands 
were annexed on the ground of their giving shelter 


to piratical vessels. In the East for a long time 
the Romans did nothing, but their responsibilities 
were accumulating and could not be neglected. 

The next great change in the status of a large 
district in the Hellenic world occurred in B.C. 133, 
when Attalus III. — the last sovereign of Pergamus — 
died after a brief and not very distinguished reign, 
leaving a will in which he bequeathed, as Roman 
writers put it briefly, his kingdom to the Romans. 
It is a natural reflection that a sovereign has no such 
power of transferring a people to another ruler. He 
cannot, except in special circumstances, even name 
his successor. Yet it is not more outrageous than 
the transference of whole nations from one sovereign 
to another by treaty without the people so trans- 
ferred being consulted, as has often happened in 
modern Europe. We must remember, however, that 
the larger part of the kingdom of Pergamus had 
been taken by the Romans bodily from King 
Antiochus and annexed to Pergamus, equally with- 
out any regard to national sentiment. To most 
of the cities, which were administered by their own 
laws, it meant little more than a change of the 
exchequers into which their taxes were to be paid, 
and the occasional obligation of serving in a Roman 
rather than a Pergamene army. There would also be 
from time to time appeals to a Roman tribunal instead 

R : to the Royal Court at Pergamus. But this would 
ttle affect the bulk of the people. An inscription 
iund on the site of Pergamus, however, puts a some- 
hat different complexion upon this will. What 
.ttalus did leave to the Romans was his personal 


property, including domain lands, factories, and slaves. 
This legacy was of immense value, because it seems 
that nearly all manufactories were in the king's hands. 
As for the people of Pergamus itself, he not only 
regarded it as remaining free, but left it the terri- 
tories which he had won from hostile peoples. The 
object seems to have been to induce the Roman 
government in return to respect the liberty of the 
demos of Pergamus. This the Romans at first did, 
but they assumed that the tribute paid by the dis- 
tricts which they had annexed to Pergamus would 
now be paid to them and they collected it at once, 
though on a lower scale than had been paid to 
the King of Pergamus. And this arrangement 
would probably have gone on, and the Greek 
cities would have enjoyed internal independence, 
while paying a tax to the Roman exchequer. But 
the appearance of a pretender in the person of 
Aristonicus (a natural son of Attalus), who claimed 
the whole inheritance, upset this arrangement. He 
held out for three years and inflicted more than 
one defeat upon Roman commanders. When at 
length he was suppressed, the whole of the Per- 
gamene territory, as well as the annexed districts 
of Mysia, Lydia, Phrygia, and Caria, were formed 
into one province of " Asia." Thus a large number 
of Greek cities, each with a local history and con- 
stitution of its own, were placed in a position like 
that of the cities of European Greece. Some of 
them were made liberae civitates for special reasons, 
but the greater part were like cities in other pro- 
vinces with local institutions, but subject to a 


tributum and to the jurisdiction of the pro- 
prietorial court. 

The change does not seem to have interfered 
with their prosperity. Pergamus itself, from which 
branched the principal roads to other parts of Asia, 
remained rich and flourishing, and was the central 
city of the new as of the old government. The 
whole province contributed to the Roman exchequer 
by a tithe on produce, port dues or customs, and a 
payment for grazing on domain land. The burden 
of taxation, if fairly distributed and honestly col- 
lected, was probably less than in the times of 
Attalus. But the Roman governor and his retinue 
of legati, pra^fecti, and the rest, were expensive 
luxuries. They levied contributions for entertain- 
ment, cartage, forage, and other expenses, and 
exacted various percentages, some of them sanc- 
tioned perhaps by custom, but many of them 
absolutely illegal. Moreover, in their anxiety to 
propitiate their rulers, a sort of epidemic of servility 
seemed to set in upon the Hellenic world — laudatory 
inscriptions (which were cheap) were continually set 
up, as well as temples erected and complimentary 
embassies sent to Rome (which were both costly) 
testifying to the virtues and purity of governors 
who had probably already mercilessly fleeced the 
cities. Some cities also sent "voluntary" contribu- 
tions to the aediles at Rome to defray the expenses of 
the games. Above all, after B.C. 123 the tithe and 
other dues were collected by companies of publicani y 
who purchased the contract from the censors at 
Rome. The purchase was effected by a com- 


petition between rival companies, who often there- 
fore paid a heavy sum to the Exchequer, and 
consequently had, in order to avoid bankruptcy, 
to exact the last farthing from the taxpayers. 
The attempt to appeal against extortionate acts 
on the part of these publicani was seldom successful. 
The governor was often himself implicated by the 
taking of percentages, and the jury before whom 
such cases came in Rome were themselves equites 
(to which order all the publicani belonged), and in- 
terested either actually or potentially in maintaining 
the system. The expenses of a prosecution, with the 
necessary journey of witnesses, would be enormous, 
and the prospect of redress slight. There were 
instances, of course, of good and honest men as 
governors, but they ran the risk of political ruin 
at the hands of the equites if they interfered with 
the publicani. A notorious case was that of P. 
Rupilius Rufus, who was a legate of Q. Mucius 
Scsevola in B.C. 95. The rule of Scaevola himself 
was long remembered by the Asiatic Greeks, not 
only for its integrity, but for its encouragement 
of local rights and privileges. He seems to have 
been out of the reach of the equites, but his legate 
Rupilius, who had distinguished himself by repressing 
the extortion of the publicani, was prosecuted and 
condemned, and passed the rest of his life in exile. 
The system, however, lasted on till B.C. 48, and 
it involved besides its direct hardships the presence 
in the country of numerous Italian money-lenders 
and of bankers who found their opportunity in the 
necessities of states and individuals alike. 



If we turn from material grievances to those of 
sentiment, we must note that the Roman and the 
Greek did not easily amalgamate in Greek lands. 
The Greek in Rome was both useful and agreeable, 
and most of the leading men found it convenient and 
pleasant to have educated Greeks as members of 
their household, not only to educate their children, 
but to supply themselves with the society they 
needed, to be friend, secretary, and the companion 
of leisure hours. We hear of this as early as the 
third century B.C., and with the increased interest in 
philosophy and art it became even more common. 
Nevertheless the average Roman despised the average 
Greek, and thought him shifty, supple, or false. 
And when he went into the Greek's own lands he 
felt it due to his dignity not. to be on too familiar 
terms with the " inferior people." Even Cicero, 
writing to his brother Quintus, who was governing 
Asia (B.C. 60), says : — 

" Among the Greeks themselves you must be on your guard 
against admitting close intimacies, except in the case of the 
, very few, if such are to be found, who are worthy of ancient 
Greece. As things now stand, indeed, too many of them are 
untrustworthy, false, and schooled by long servitude in the 
arts of extravagant adulation. My advice is that these men 
should all be entertained with courtesy, but that close ties of 
hospitality or friendship should only be formed with the 
best of them : excessive intimacies with them are not very 
safe — for they do not venture to oppose our wishes — and 
they are not only jealous of our countrymen but of their 
own as well." 

We seem to hear an elderly Indian civilian dis- 


coursing to a junior in the service. Another extract 
from the same letter will show generally both the 
evils in the province and the sort of benefits that 
the Roman rule might confer if honestly ad- 
ministered. He is enumerating the good points in 
his brother's rule: — 

" No new debt is being contracted by the states, while 
many have been relieved by you from a heavy and long- 
standing one. Several cities that had become dilapidated 
and almost deserted, of which one was the most famous state 
in Ionia, the other in Caria — Samos and Halicarnassus — 
have been given a new life by you. There is no party fight- 
ing, no civil strife in the towns : you take care that the 
government of the states is administered by the best class 
of citizens ; brigandage is abolished in Mysia ; murder sup- 
pressed in many districts ; peace is established throughout 
the province ; and not only the robberies usual on highways 
and in country places, but those more numerous and more 
serious ones in towns and temples, have been completely 
stopped ; the fame, fortunes, and repose of the rich have 
been relieved of that most oppressive instrument of praetorial 
rapacity — vexatious prosecution : the expenses and tribute of 
the states are made to fall with equal weight on all who 
live in the territories of those states : access to you is as 
easy as possible : your ears are open to the complaints of 
all : no man's want of means or want of friends excludes him, 
I don't say from access to you in public or on the tribunal, 
but even from your house and chamber : in a word, through- 
out your government there is no harshness or cruelty — every- 
where clemency, mildness, and kindness reign supreme." 

This ideal picture of the pax Romano, is probably 
very unlike the real state of things under Ouintus 
Cicero or any one else. It rather serves to show us 
clearly what the evils of the system were. A lurid 


example of quite a different state of things is the 
anecdote which Cicero tells Atticus in regard to his 
own province of Cilicia in B.C. 51 [ad Att. v. 21 ; 
vi. 1]. When he arrived he found that a certain 
Scaptius, a praefectus under his predecessor Claudius, 
had been at Salamis in Cyprus with a squadron of 
cavalry, which he had employed to coerce the town 
councillors to pay a large sum of money which they 
had borrowed with interest at 48 per cent. He had 
shut them up in their council chamber so long that 
some had actually died of starvation. Cicero re- 
called Scaptius, refused to reappoint him as a 
praefectus, and when the case came before him 
refused to decree any payment beyond 12 per cent. 
But he found to his surprise that the real creditor 
was M. Brutus. Very strong pressure was put upon 
Cicero himself to secure the payment of the money, 
which he appears to have resisted as far as the heavy 
interest was concerned, but as he expected to be 
succeeded by a man connected with Brutus he 
expressed some doubt as to what would happen 
under a new regime. 

The instances of extortion and cruelty might be 
multiplied from the speeches against Verres, the 
plunderer of Sicily, and against Piso of Macedonia. 
It is well perhaps to notice what may be said on 
the other side in favour of Roman administration. 
The first and most obvious is that the Romans did 
maintain peace, and that, except in cases of revenue 
and where the personal advantage of the proconsul 
came in, the administration of justice in the Roman 
courts was more equitable than that in the native or 


Greek tribunals. We even hear in regard to tax- 
collecting of some of the states assigned by Sulla to 
Rhodes petitioning the Senate that they might pay 
to Roman rather than Rhodian collectors. This, 
however, was an exception ; and while, generally 
speaking, in the Greek towns the trading class 
was in favour of the Roman sway, the feelings of 
the majority was seen only too clearly when in 
B.C. 88 Mithradates, King of Pontus, suddenly called 
upon the Greeks in Asia to strike a blow at the 
Roman domination. 

Mithradates VI., Eupator, held a kingdom origin- 
ally (between B.C. 3 13-280) carved out of Cappadocia. 
It had been extended by the successors of the 
founder partly by conquest, partly by Roman 
favour. He himself (B.C. 118-62) had pushed his 
power westward round the shores of the Black Sea, 
from Sinope on the south coast to the Crimea on 
the north, and eastward to the Euphrates. He was 
a man of considerable culture, and had made 
alliances with Greeks, especially with Athens, as 
controlling Delos and thereby the island confederacy, 
and surrounded himself with Greek officers. In 
B.C. 105 he began preparations for further annexa- 
tions by a tour of inspection through Asia Minor, 
and presently made an arrangement with Nicomedes, 
King of Bithynia, for a joint invasion of Paphlagonia. 
This was the first of a series of encroachments and 
intrigues during the next seventeen years in which 
he was constantly thwarted by Roman officers or 
legates who ordered him to relinquish one plan after 
another. At last, towards the end of B.C. 89, the 


Roman government declared war. During the year 
15. c. 88 fortune was almost uniformly in favour of 
Mithradates, and two Roman imperators were being 
led about as prisoners in the king's train. 

Immediately there was a movement throughout 
all the Greek cities, with some insignificant excep- 
tions, in his favour ; and later in the same year, 
B.C. ^%, he issued instructions to the cities — now 
mostly controlled by his own officers, that all Latin- 
speaking residents should be put to death on a fixed 
day. The order was almost universally obeyed, and 
a massacre took place of almost unexampled horror, 
no respect being shown to sex, age, or character, 
or the protection of altar or sanctuary. From the 
temple of Artemis at Ephesus, of Asclepius at 
Pergamns, of Hestia at Caunes, of Concord at Tralles, 
the suppliants were torn away and slain. At Caunes 
children were killed in the presence of their mothers, 
wives in that of their husbands. At Adrymittium 
in Mysia, they were driven into the sea and drowned, 
at Tralles a Paphlagonian captain and soldiers were 
hired to carry out the order of death. The massacre, 
in fact, was an outburst of deadly vengeance for 
wrongs long silently borne and an indulgence of 
the long-pent-up anger of an oppressed people. In 
a few places the right of sanctuary was respected 
for a time, and some Italians managed to escape to 
Rhodes, which almost alone of the states in or near 
Asia held aloof from Mithradates, though it had 
many grievances against Rome. The loss of its 

:raea (or territory on the mainland) and the 
liminution of its trade by the opening of Delos as 


a free port had been serious misfortunes, but the 
extension of its Italian trade had partly made up 
for these things, and at any rate the Rhodians did 
not feel sufficiently certain of the ultimate success of 
Mithradates or of any benefit likely to accrue to 
them from it. Their successful resistance to the 
blockade of the royal fleet did something towards 
saving the situation. For the movement was not 
confined to Asia. Athens — which had been dis- 
tinguished by Roman favour, and had been allowed 
to retain some of its island empire — had yet been for 
some time past looking to Mithradates as a possible 
restorer of Hellenic independence. It had been on 
friendly terms with his ancestors and with the king 
himself — decreeing to him the usual honours of 
statues, gymnasia, and votive offerings. The Athe- 
nians were now instigated to join him by Aristion, a 
philosophic demagogue, who, being commissioned to 
visit Mithradates at Ephesus, sent home such glowing 
descriptions of the abilities, resources, and successes 
of the king, that when he returned accompanied 
by numerous slaves laden with gold, and wearing 
a ring engraved with a portrait of the king (who 
had a famous collection of gems), he was received 
as though he were a victorious general. His speech, 
dwelling on the oppressions of Rome, roused such 
enthusiasm that he was elected commander-in-chief, 
the friendship of Rome was renounced, and the 
abolition of the limited franchise decreed. 

It was the old mistake of hoping for freedom from 
foreign intervention ; and this policy, adopted with 
such levity by the Athenians, was followed by the 


cities of the Peloponnese, Bceotia, and many other 
parts of Greece. Delos, that owed its commercial 
existence to Rome and was full of Italian men of 
business, almost alone held out, and was accordingly 
overrun by Archelaus, the general of Mithradates, 
who put Delians and Italians to the sword indis- 
criminately, sold women and children into slavery, 
and plundered the temples, which, as in other places, 
were used as banks. The Athenians were gratified 
by having half the spoil and seeing their " general " 
Aristion treated as an equal of the king's general. 
Nevertheless, they had to admit a royal garrison 
into the Piraeus, and at the beginning of B.C. 87 
Mithradates was elected general-in-chief, after the 
precedent of Philip and Alexander. Athens, there- 
fore, practically became subject to the King of 
Pontus. The rest of Southern Greece submitted ; 
Chalcis was forcibly occupied, which involved the 
submission of all Eubcea. Thespiae was the only 
state in Bceotia which did not follow the lead of 
Thebes ; and the Mithradatic fleet sailed among the 
islands without meeting with any resistance. Once 
more Greece had found a champion of her liberties. 

The nemesis was not long delayed. Sulla entered 
Greece with an army in the summer of B.C. 87, when 
the Pontic forces by sea and land had already sus- 
tained a check at the hand of the pro quaestor, 
Bruttius Sura, off Sciathus and in Bceotia. But 
Athens was now the headquarters of Pontic power 
in Greece, and upon Athens Sulla directed his attack. 
Southern Greece generally was let alone, as sure to 
fall to the power that commanded the pass of 


Thermopylae and held Athens. But a Pontic army- 
overran Macedonia, which was almost denuded of 
troops, and was prepared, like Persian and Mace- 
donian invaders of old, to march thence upon the 
Peloponnese. Meanwhile Athens was closely in- 
vested, and when it fell in the spring of B.C. 86, 
after many months of great suffering, the recupera- 
tion of seventy years was all undone. By Sulla's 
order a great part of its inhabitants was put to the 
sword ; and though the rest were spared and the 
buildings left uninjured, 1 the ancient inhabitants 
were so much reduced and the new ones introduced 
were of such heterogeneous quality that the Athenian 
character was permanently modified, and much that 
was characteristic disappeared. The fall of the city 
was followed by that of the Piraeus, and in this case 
Sulla spared nothing. The docks and magazines 
were burnt, the fortifications were entirely destroyed ; 
and from this the place never recovered. The 
famous letter of consolation to Cicero written by 
Sulpicius in B.C. 45 forms an eloquent comment upon 
the permanence of the ruin wrought by Sulla. " On 
my return voyage from Asia, while sailing from 
^Egina towards Megara, I began surveying the 
adjacent regions. Behind me was i^Egina, in front 
Megara ; on my right the Piraeus, on my left 
Corinth. All these towns were once upon a time 
eminently prosperous : they now lie before my eyes 
mere heaps of ruins." 2 

This was not the end of the sufferings of Greece. 

1 The Odeion was burnt, but apparently by Aristion, not by Sulla, 
? Cic. Ep. ed.fam. iv. 5. 


Archelaus, the general of Mithradates, was in oc- 
cupation of Phocis and Boeotia, and in the summer 
of B.C. S6 was defeated with great slaughter at 
Chreroneia. He still, however, had command of 
the sea, and retreating to Chalcis carried on a series 
of piratical descents upon the coast of the Pelopon- 
nese and the western islands. It was not till 
Sulla's legate, Lucullus, had collected a fleet from 
Egypt, Rhodes, Cyprus, and other islands that the 
Romans were able to stop these piracies. Mean- 
while Greece had to endure both them and the 
severities of Sulla, who not only punished those 
Athenian citizens who had remained during the 
Pontic occupation, but mulcted many other states. 
Half the territory which had been left to Thebes 
was now devoted to repay the treasures he had 
taken from the temples at Delphi, Olympia, and 
Epidaurus. Oropus — taken from Athens — was 
assigned in similar payment to the oracle of 
Amphiaraus in Boeotia, and works of art from 
many places were shipped to Rome. Among other 
valuables it is specially recorded that Sulla seized 
the library of Apellicon, containing the works of 
Aristotle and Theophrastus. The cowed inhabitants 
tried to propitiate him by paying him honours as 
a benefactor, and he left the Hellenic world full 
of his statues, his trophies, and his devastations. 

The swift change of front on the part of the Greek 
cities in Asia was no less sudden and complete. 
The king made one more attempt to retain Greece. 
He sent an army of seventy thousand men under 
Dorilaus into Boeotia later in the same year (B.C. S6) 


which was defeated by Sulla at Orchomenus with 
such immense slaughter that the hold of Mithradates 
in Greece was completely destroyed. The effect in 
Asia was immediate. The Greek cities expelled 
their Pontic garrisons and declared for Rome. The 
movement had begun after the battle at Chaeroneia, 
for the yoke of Mithradates had been found to be 
no lighter than that of Rome. If he remitted taxes, 
he enforced military service, and incurred the resent- 
ment of the mercantile classes by a partial abolition 
of debts and the enfranchisement of slaves who had 
betrayed their masters. These measures, joined to 
some instances of severity, such as the deportation 
of the inhabitants of Chios, turned the feelings of 
the Greeks from him, and we have a series of in- 
scriptions in Ephesus and elsewhere renouncing his 
authority and striving — by representing that the}) 
had acted under compulsion — to ingratiate them- 
selves once more with Rome. The campaign or 
march of Flaccus and Fimbria, sent out to supersede 
Sulla, cleared Macedonia and Thrace as far as 
Byzantium of the enemy and carried victory into 
Bithynia (B.C. 85-4). The appearance of the fleet 
collected by Lucullus then enabled Sulla (who 
declined to be superseded) to negotiate with 
Mithradates, who, by the treaty of Delium (B.C. 84), 
agreed to evacuate Roman Asia and to restore the 
inhabitants whom he had removed from Chios and 

The results to Asiatic Greece were deplorable. 
Sulla treated the province with great severity, 
especially, of course, those states which had been 


prominent in joining Mithradates. Some few were 
rewarded for loyalty by being granted " freedom " — 
such as Ilium, Chios, Lycia, Salonike, Magnesia ad 
Sipylum, and Rhodes. But not only were some of 
the rest given up to pillage, as Iasos, Samos, and 
Clazomenne, but in all of them Roman garrisons were 
stationed, and any sign of resistance led to the 
destruction of walls and the massacre or enslavement 
of the inhabitants. Upon all alike was imposed a 
fine equal to the taxation of five years. " The cities," 
says Appian, " oppressed by poverty, borrowed the 
money at high rates of interest or mortgaged their 
theatres, gymnasiums, walls, harbours, and every 
other kind of public property, being pressed for pay- 
ment by the soldiers." Moreover, the withdrawal of 
Sulla's main army and fleet . left them a prey to the 
pirates, who had been fostered and employed by 
Mithradates, and now grew bolder and more 
outrageous than ever, not confining their attacks 
to ships, but seizing harbours, forts, and cities, 
overrunning islands and plundering temples. Sulla 
therefore, left Greece and Asia in a pitiable plight, 
though once more obedient. The only place that 
had not given in was Mitylene, which did not 
surrender till five years later (B.C. 79), when it 
was taken and plundered by Thermus. 

Nothing effective was done to put down piracy for 
nearly twenty years, and meanwhile the question of 
the government of Bithynia, whose last sovereign 
Xicomedes on his death (B.C. 79) left the Romans his 
heirs, gave rise to another war with Mithradates 
(B.C. 74-63), which, however, did not much affect 


Hellenic Asia, except the cities on the Propontis and 
Euxine, and especially Cyzicus, which had to stand a 
long siege. Lucullus, who commanded in this war, 
spent the winter of B.C. 71-70 in Ephesus in re- 
organising the finances of many of the Greek cities, 
now overburdened with debt, by cutting down the 
interest to 12 per cent, which, according to the edict 
of several praetors, was the highest rate that the 
Roman courts would recognise. He also prevented 
debtors from being deprived of the whole of their 
property. These measures were doubtless a great 
relief, but their necessity shows how quickly the 
Roman moneylender had regained his footing in the 
province. Careful governors mitigated the evil by 
refusing to nominate any man engaged in business 
in the province (negotiator) as a praefectus. But 
others were less scrupulous, and the deplorable result 
has been already illustrated in the case of Salamis in 

The next event of importance to the Greek world 
was Pompey's suppression of the pirates (B.C. 67-66) 
and his settlement of the East after the death of 
Mithradates (B.C. 63). These two things contributed 
largely to make European and Asiatic Greece what 
they were when the Empire began. Some partial 
attempts to check piracy in the Mediterranean had 
been already made by P. Servilius Isauricus in 
Cilicia B.C. 74; and by Q. Caecilius Metellus when 
praetor in Sicily, B.C. 71-70. But C. Antonius had 
failed (apparently from corruption) in Crete (B.C. 74), 
and when Metellus undertook the task in B.C. 68-7 
he seems to have, to a great extent, depopulated the 


island, which henceforth was held as a Roman 
province, either separately or in conjunction with 
Greece. In B.C. 67 Pompey received a wide com- 
mission, giving him absolute power for three years 
over the Mediterranean and 50 miles inland, with 
24 legates, 500 ships, and the right of raising 120,000 
men as soldiers or sailors, with 500 horsemen, for the 
express purpose of destroying piracy. He performed 
his mission with marvellous rapidity. It may be, as 
has been said, that he was too lenient, and that the 
evil was only in abeyance after his six months' 
campaign. He certainly treated the pirates not as 
mere ruffians beyond the pale of law, but rather as a 
population driven to this way of life by want, and, 
accordingly, found settlements and lands for them at 
Dyme in Achaia and in Cilicia. But for the time, at 
any rate, the success was so complete and the relief so 
clearly marked by the fall in the price of provisions 
that he was not only regarded by the Roman people 
as their greatest and most indispensable general, 
but was looked up to in Greece as the greatest 
of the Romans, and honoured as a benefactor, and in 
some cases as a second founder. 1 This was the case 
in an increased degree at the end of the Mithradatic 
war, to which he was appointed in B.C. 66, with 
the absolute power of settling affairs in Phrygia, 
Lycaonia, Galatia, Cappadocia, Colchis, and Armenia. 
These districts, though including some Hellenic or 

1 For instance, an inscription on a base of a statue at Mitylene 
describes him as <ra»r//pi Kai ic-ianf, for in honour of his friend 
Theophanes he restored Mitylene to the status of a libera civitas after 
the Mithradatic war. 


semi-Hellenic cities, cannot be reckoned as Greece. 
But his settlement of affairs in Asia generally affected 
the interests of many Greeks, especially in the reduc- 
tion of Syria to the form of a province. His plan was 
not to destroy, but rather to strengthen existing 
liberties or privileges. He, however, assessed the 
tribute with greater care, so as to include many 
cities which up to this time, from one cause or 
another, had escaped ; and he surrounded the Greek 
communities in Asia as a whole with a number of 
subordinate sovereigns, who owed their position to 
Rome, and were really forced in many ways to act in 
obedience to Roman magistrates. It is significant 
that though Pompey deservedly had a high character 
for honour and disinterestedness, yet he had vast sums 
of money invested in loans to many of these subordi- 
nate sovereigns, whose establishment was to depend 
upon his recommendation to the Senate and upon the 
Senate's confirmation of his acta. It is as though a 
governor-general of India were to make private 
advances to a Rajah whom he was supporting in his 
royalty by British forces. Nor under Pompey did 
the flow of gold and works of art from Greece into 
Italy cease. Yet the general result of his five years 
in the East was beneficial to Greece, and some states 
had particular causes of gratitude to him. Thus, 
besides restoring Mitylene to freedom, he presented 
Athens with fifty talents for the restoration of the 
city ; visited Rhodes and confirmed its privileges ; 
and did so much for the merchants at Delos that 
they formed a club — Pompeiastse — to keep alive the 
memory of his victories and his services. Pompey's 


personal integrity, the mildness and equity of his 
administration of justice, helped, with his success in 
arms, to make his name favourably known in Asia 
and Greece, just as we are told that it was respected 
among the Sicilian Greeks in B.C. 82. " He was one," 
says Cicero, " by whose valour the Roman people 
were more dreaded among foreign nations, by whose 
justice were more beloved." 

It was no wonder, then, that in the next occasion 
of the Greeks taking active part in military affairs 
(the civil war of B.C. 49-48) they were generally 
found on the side of Pompey rather than of Caesar. 
The former obtained recruits from Ionia, Macedonia, 
Bceotia, Athens, Sparta, and other parts of the 
Peloponnese, and many cities in Greece were occupied 
by his troops. Consequently while Caesar was person- 
ally engaged with Pompey in the early part of B.C. 48, 
his officers had to undertake a kind of conquest of 
Greece. It was accomplished apparently for the 
most part without bloodshed and with little serious 
resistance. /Etolia, Acarnania, and Amphilochia 
gave in their adherence at once, as did Delphi, 
Thebes, and Orchomenus. In Thessaly there was 
a division of opinion, for Pompey's father-in-law, 
Metellus Scipio, coming from Syria with troops, 
occupied Larisa and the line of the Via Egnatia, 
which the Romans had constructed from Apollonia 
on the west coast to Thessalonika on the east. 
The Peloponnesians blocked the Isthmus of Corinth 
against Caesar's legate, Fufius Calenus, and Athens 
closed her gates. But the Piraeus — now an open 
town — was occupied in Caesar's interest. After the 


victory of Pharsalia, however (September, B.C. 48), 
there was a sudden change. Megara, indeed, held 
out and was taken by force, and many of its citizens 
slaughtered or sold into slavery. But the Athenians 
at once submitted, and sent envoys to seek for pardon, 
which Caesar granted easily, with the remark : " How 
often is the glory of your ancestors to save you ? " — 
and the humbled people were fain to erect his statue 
as their " saviour and benefactor." x Calenus then went 
to Patrae, which made no resistance, and the whole of 
the Peloponnese fell into his hands. He remained 
in military occupation till Caesar's return from 
Alexandria in the autumn of B.C. 47, when Greece 
was put as a separate province under the rule of 
an eminent lawyer, Servius Sulpicius Rufus. This 
arrangement, as we shall see, was at first only 
temporary, but the appointment of Sulpicius seems 
to have been meant to be a measure of conciliation. 
He had been an anti-Caesarian, but probably had not 
actually been engaged in the war, having retired to 
Samos, while his son was actually serving on Caesar's 
staff. He was a man of learning, and would have 
some sympathy with Greek ideas, while his legal 
training would incline him to follow the precedent of 
Scaevola in Asia by respecting the local laws and 
rights of jurisdiction in the cities. 

The end of the Alexandrine war, which left Caesar 
practically master of Egypt, though it was still 
nominally independent, was followed by a visitation 
of Greek cities in Asia. The fervour of their new 

1 Dittenb. Sylloge, 346, o Stj/ioQ Taiov 'lovXiov Kaiaapa apx^p'ta Kai 
SiKTiiTopa tov lavTov GwTijpa. Kai avepytTijv. 


allegiance or servility is again illustrated by inscrip- 
tions. At Ephesus, in the name of council and 
people " and the other Greek cities of Asia," he is 
styled "descendant of Ares and Aphrodite, a glorious 
god and common saviour of human life." Even the 
people of Mitylene who so lately had styled Pompey 
their benefactor and founder were fain to seek Caesar's 
friendship and favour. 1 Caesar had already in his 
first consulship (B.C. 59) benefited the provinces by 
passing a law to limit the amount of requisition to be 
made by a governor and his staff: his actual benefits 
now were rather in the restoration of order and peace 
than in more palpable ways. But in Asia he abolished 
the system of farming the revenue by Roman publicani, 
fixing the amount to be paid by each state, and 
leaving it to be levied by native or Greek collectors. 
He also placed a colony of veterans in Corinth, which 
quickly regained something of its old prosperity, and 
he projected the cutting of a canal across the isthmus — 
a work which, started a hundred years later by Nero, 
has only been accomplished within the last few years. 
The liberties and privileges of the cities he seems to 
have left much as he found them. But just before his 
death he seems to have arranged that Greece should 
be for three years at least united to Macedonia, under 
the rule of Marcus Brutus, at any rate, so far as it had 
always been under the pro-consul of Macedonia. 

In the renewed civil war of B.C. 43-2 Athens and 
other parts of Greece once more committed them- 
selves to the losing side. It was from Athens that 
Marcus Brutus started to take over his Macedonian 
* Pittenberger, Sylloge Inscript. 347, 349. 


province, and from which he drew many recruits. 
But when, after the battles of Philippi (B.C. 42, 
November) Antony took over the eastern part of 
the Empire, he visited Greece without apparently 
inflicting any punishment. He affected the fashion- 
able philhellenism, attended Greek games and 
literary competitions, was initiated in the Eleusinian 
mysteries, singled Athens out for special bounties, as 
well as restoring to her ^Egina and other islands, and 
contributed liberally to the temple at Delphi. Greece 
as a province was reunited to Macedonia and placed 
under the government of L. Censorinus. When 
Antony crossed from Greece to Asia he was received 
with extravagant compliments and every kind of 
adulation and entertainment, the Greek states once 
more trying to excuse themselves for the assistance 
which they had rendered to the beaten party. 
Though the states now suffered severely in money, 
for Antony exacted a second tributum for the year, 
Brutus and Cassius having already collected one, he 
seems to have been willing to listen to remonstrances 
and not to have been harsh in exacting the tax. Nor 
did his rearrangements in Asia show any jealousy of 
Greek nationalities. The Lycian confederacy was 
relieved of tribute; Rhodes was strengthened by the 
attribution of Andros, Tenos, and Naxos, and some 
territory in Caria ; Laodicea and Tarsus were made 
free cities. Later on, however, when his infatuation 
with Cleopatra and his quarrel with Octavian had 
turned his thoughts to the establishment of an Eastern 
Empire, with Alexandria as its Rome, he began the I 
practice of robbing Greek towns and temples in Asia 


for the adornment of Alexandria, removing among 
other things the famous library at Pergamus to make 
up for the partial destruction by fire of the Alexan- 
drian books during Caesar's occupation. 

Yet on the whole, during Antony's Eastern im- 
perium (B.C. 42-32) Greece itself enjoyed complete 
repose. The outlying semi-hellenistic countries 
— Syria and Ccele-Syria, Cyprus, Cilicia, and 
Cyrene — were treated by him as at his disposal to 
be parcelled out into kingdoms for his or Cleopatra's 
children, or his own partisans. It was the Western 
Hellas of Sicily that suffered most, being held for 
several years by Sextus Pompeius — half-sovereign, 
half-pirate — and becoming the scene of many military 
operations. After the treaty of Misenum (B.C. 39) 
the Peloponnese was to be handed over to Pompeius, 
though it seems never to have really passed into 
his hands ; but until his final defeat in B.C. 36 its 
coasts, like those of Italy itself, were constantly 
subject to attacks from his piratical fleets. 

In the last scene of the civil war, the struggle 
between Augustus and Antony, which ended at 
'Actium B.C. 31, Greece was again for the most part 
on the losing side, and again suffered as an enemy's 
country. Previous to Actium many coast towns had 
been forcibly occupied by Agrippa ; but after the 
victory of Augustus the Greeks everywhere hastened 
to pay court to the conqueror. A temple in his 
honour was erected at Pergamus, statues set up 
at Olympia {h.pirr\q tWcv kcu Bvvoiag) and in other 
places ; and there are traces during his residence at 
Samos in the winter of B.C. 31 and again in B.C. 30 


of his having taken various measures for restoring 
order and prosperity in the Greek towns of Asia. 
Certain cities in Crete were rewarded by being 
made free. He restored the monuments in Ephesus, 
Samos, and elsewhere, which had been taken away 
by Antony and Cleopatra, and he is said generally to 
have " ordered things " in Greece, though few details 
can be ascertained. He seems to have meditated 
establishing new centres of Greek life, though he 
visited Athens without any sign of disfavour and 
was initiated in the Eleusinian mysteries. The new 
colonies were to be Nicopolis, near Actium, to which 
he compelled various people in the neighbourhood to 
migrate, insisting that it should be admitted to the 
Amphictyonic League ; and Patrae, with which also 
he united several townships in the same district. 
This policy of founding colonies in the provinces 
was extended to other parts of the Hellenic world, 
to Macedonia (as Philippi and Dyrrachium), to Asia 
(as Alexandrea Troas), to Syria (as Berytum), to 
Pisidia (as Antioch). It was not, however, till the 
division of the provinces in B.C. 27 between Augustus 
and the Senate that Greece seems to have become 
definitely a separate province (Senatorial) under the 
official title of Achaia. This name has had a variety 
of signification — at one time confined to the district 
on the north of Peloponnesus, then embracing the 
whole of the Peloponnesus, and then again confined 
to the territories of the Achaean League, after Sparta 
and Corinth had been separated from it. From this 
time it means the Roman Province, which included 
all of what we call Greece, except parts of Epirus 


and Thessaly, which were included in Macedonia, 
and it was governed by a propraetor (called also 
proconsul), whose official residence was Corinth. 1 

With the reduction of Egypt into the form of a 
Roman province (though with peculiar conditions 
that made it almost a private domain of the Em- 
peror) disappeared the last of the semi-hellenic 
dynasties bordering on the Mediterranean, which in 
the previous century had been an actual Greek 
Power, controlling the Thracian Chersonese and the 
Cyclades. One more centre of Hellenic culture was 
to have its destinies shaped by Western influences. 

The second visit of Augustus to the East (B.C. 
21-19) was °f somewhat more importance to Greece. 
Beginning with Sicily, he strengthened Syracuse and 
other cities by colonies of veterans, which, how- 
ever, must have done much to lessen their Hellenic 
character. In Greece proper, besides his colonies of 
Xicopolis and Patrae, which he was anxious to foster, 
he showed favour to Sparta rather than to Athens. 
This had also been the policy of Julius, and ac- 
cordingly there was at Sparta a temple to Julius and 
an altar to Augustus. It had had a short season 
of prosperity under its prince or Jiegemon Eurycles 
who had erected some fine buildings both in it and 
in Corinth. But though Augustus restored Cythera 
to Sparta, in recognition, it was thought of hospitality 

1 Nevertheless the term was still sometimes applied in a narrower 
sense to that union of Achaean towns which was allowed to revive after 
the dissolution of B.C. 146 for certain purposes. Thus an inscription in 
honour of Augustus between the years B.C. 40 and B.C. 27 speaks of 
to toivbv tCjp 'AxcuCov [Uittenb. 351]. 


shown to Livia when she fled there with her former 
husband, it was still debarred from the harbour town 
of Gytheium, and remained quite insignificant. 
Athens was, on the other hand, deliberately depressed 
as far as political interests were concerned, for it was 
deprived of ^Egina and Eretria and of one of the few 
sources of revenue still left it — the sale of its citizen- 
ship. The next year was spent by Augustus in 
regulating the Asiatic provinces, especially Bithynia. 
From henceforth these countries shared in the 
advantages which the imperial regime created — by 
the increased check upon the tyranny and rapacity 
of provincial governors, the facility of appeal to the 
Emperor, and the greater security that their com- 
plaints would be fairly considered. To the provincials 
the Emperor was not the despot which he appeared 
to certain classes at Rome, but their protector and 
support. Honours are therefore everywhere paid to 
him, or his family, or his responsible ministers. To 
this inscriptions give witness in every direction, as 
at Ilium to Agrippa, at Delos to Caesar's daughter 
Julia, at Hypata in Thessaly to his adopted son, 
Gaius. The one condition of favour, however, was 
order and loyalty. Samos was granted libertas in 
honour of his long residence in the island, but 
Cyzicus was deprived of the same privilege for 
having beaten and executed certain Roman citizens, 
as Tyre and Sidon incurred the same penalty by 
political disorders. The alarm of the magistrates at 
Philippi when told that St. Paul was a Roman citizen, 
and of the town clerk of Ephesus when there was an 
uproar in the theatre, vividly illustrate this cardinal 


principle of the Imperial rule — local institutions and 
jurisdictions were respected, but there must be order 
and peace and obedience to law. In every state — 
whether free or provincial — the Emperor represents 
a law which pervades all and is above all, and to him 
every citizen of any state within the Empire, what- 
ever its theoretical status, can, in the last resort, look 
for justice, can, as we should say, change the venue of 
his cause, if he had good reason to doubt getting 
justice in his own country. The case of St. Paul 
would naturally occur to the mind, but a stronger 
one is contained in a still existing letter of Augustus 
to the people of Cnidus, which was a libera civitas, 
not under a provincial governor. It concerns a case 
of homicide, in which the accused were evidently 
unpopular in their native town, and who, there- 
fore, " appealed to Caesar." His answer in a 
Greek translation still exists engraven on a stone 

"Imperator Cnesar, son of the deified one, Augustus, twelve 
times consul, in the 18th year of his tribunician power 
[i.e., B.C. 6], to the magistrates, senate, and people of the 
Cnidians, greeting : 

" Your ambassadors, Dionysius and Dionysius son of 
Dionysius, appeared before me at Rome, and delivered 
the decree accusing Eubulus son of Anaxandridas, now 
dead, and his wife Truphera, who was present, concerning 
the death of Eubulus son of Chrysippus. Whereupon I — 
having ordered my friend Asinius Gallus to examine the 
slaves by torture who were implicated in the charge — ascer- 
tained that Philinus son of Chrysippus came three nights in 
succession to the house of Eubulus and Truphera with 
violence and intent to break into it, and that on the third 
night he brought with him his brother Eubulus : that the 


householders Eubulus and Truphera, as they could get no 
security in their own house either by parleying with Philinus 
or barricading themselves against his attack, ordered one of 
their slaves not to kill them barbarously, as one might not 
unjustly have been tempted by anger to do, but to keep 
them off by throwing the contents of the close-stool upon 
them : but that the slave, whether intentionally or uninten- 
tionally — for he persisted in denying intention — let the 
vessel slip with its contents, so that Eubulus was knocked 
down, though he better deserved to have escaped than his 

" I send you the actual depositions. And I should have 
wondered how it came about that the defendants were so 
much afraid of the examination of the slaves being held in 
your courts, had it not been that you seemed to me to have 
been much irritated with them and to have shown a perverted 
indignation — not against those who deserved every kind of 
punishment for coming to attack another man's house by 
night with force and violence three distinct times, to the 
common danger of you all, but against those who have met 
with an accident while acting in self-defence, but have done 
no wrong. 

" But now you will in my opinion be acting rightly if, in 
accordance with my decision on this matter, you make the 
entry in your public records also to agree therewith." 

Asinius Gallus, who was commissioned by Augustus 
to take the depositions of the slaves, was at the time 
proconsul of Asia, but he does not act in that 
capacity because Cnidus is a free state, not under 
the jurisdiction of the provincial governor. He acts 
as Caesar's legatus, and sends the depositions to 
Rome, where they are considered by Augustus him- 
self, who acquits the accused and orders the decree 
passed against then in Cnidus to be erased. 

Thus the personal authority of the Emperor is felt 
in every part of the Empire, and no one, however 



humble, but is conscious of an authority to which he 
may look in the last resort for justice. 

This is the good side of the Empire as it affected 
the provinces. Still it remains true that Greece itself 
withered under the rigime. There was no national 
life and no great men. For great men seem only to 
rise at the call of duty and patriotism, and are not, it 
appears, produced except at times of strife or danger, 
at some crisis which demands them. 


Greek education — Grammar, music and gymnastics — The Sophists — 
The philosophical schools — Literature— Epic, lyric and dramatic 
poetry — Alexandrine poets, epic and bucolic — History — Oratory. 

THE value attached by the Greeks to education is 
manifested in many ways. There was no duty which 
was regarded as of more sacred obligation in a 
parent than to provide for the education of his 
children. In some states, such as Sparta, it was 
taken out of his hands and made the care of the 
whole community. In others there were laws 
inflicting penalties and disabilities on those who 
neglected it, while in others the absence of such 
laws was made up for by the force of public opinion. 
When the Athenian population was removed en 
masse before the battle of Salamis, we are told that 
the people of Trcezen, among other acts of kindness, 
provided school fees for the children who had taken 
refuge with them, so that not even that crisis should 
be allowed to interrupt the training proper to their 
age. More than three hundred years later Polybius 
still speaks of the payment of school fees for one's 
children as the last to be omitted amidst financial 



difficulties. The sentiment was, therefore, strong 
and permanent. The result seems to have been that 
the number of those who grow up without at any 
rate the rudiments of letters and arithmetic was 
everywhere very small. 

The professed object of this education, however, 
was not technical, but moral. It was to make good 
men and useful citizens. Technical instruction, the 
teaching of a trade or an art, was regarded also as 
incumbent upon all parents, except, perhaps, the 
wealthiest. But this was not education. The object 
of education was something higher and more 
universal — to familiarise the soul with what was 
great and noble, and to train the body to be the 
effective servant and agent of the soul. This educa- 
tion was simple and uniform as compared with that 
of our day. It did not include the study of any 
foreign language, nor, at any rate directly, such 
studies as geography, history, or theology, though 
these were in a manner involved in it. The first 
principles of morality and religion were the business 
of the mother, nurse, or paidagogos — the slave who, 
in most houses, was especially attached to the service 
of the children, taking them to school and guarding 
them from evil company. 

The two subjects of primary education were 
music and gymnastics. But by " music " the 
Greeks understood all intellectual subjects. Educa- 
tion began with reading and writing, and for the 
poorer children, whose stay at the school was 
necessarily short, it went, perhaps, little beyond that. 
But for the average child, and above all for the rich, it 


included learning by heart and reciting passages from 
the poets, selected for the lessons in virtue or know- 
ledge which they conveyed. The next step was 
music, in the modern acceptation of the term. All 
boys were taught to play the lyre or flute, and to 
sing to it, as far as they were capable of learning. 
The greatest importance was attached to this branch 
of education. Music was believed to soften and 
humanise the soul, as well as to inspire it with noble 
and lofty emotions, and in the representations of the 
interior of schools which survive on pottery, no scene 
is more frequent than that of boys practising on a lyre 
or flute with a master facing them and giving them 
instructions. This view of education is put by Plato 
into the mouth of a great teacher — Protagoras : — 

" When children have learnt to read and under- 
stand the written, as well as they do the spoken 
word, schoolmasters set before them for reading 
aloud poems of good writers, and compel them to 
learn them by heart. These poems contain much 
moral instruction, many narratives, panegyrics, and 
encomiums upon brave men of old, that the child 
may be roused to emulation of their virtues and 
yearn to become like them. . . . Besides, when they 
have learnt to play on the lyre, their masters teach 
them the songs of another class of poets — the lyrical, 
setting their songs to the music. Thus compelling 
the principles of rhythm and harmony to sink into 
their souls, that the children may be more cultivated, 
and becoming imbued with the principles of true 
rhythm and harmony, may be effective in speech 
and action alike. For a man's life needs always to 


be rhythmical and harmonious. Next they send the 
children to the trainer's, that they may have sound 
bodies in the service of sound minds, and may not 
be compelled to play the coward whether in war or 
any other activity by the bad state of their bodies." 

Though we cannot suppose that ordinary people 
would reason with such refinement upon the effect of 
education, it was some such theory that unconsciously 
influenced the Greek view of its significance. But 
for the boys who looked forward to playing an 
important part in public life — generally the sons of 
wealthier parents — there was something else needed. 
In a democracy like that of Athens — and in varying 
degrees in other states — the only method of attaining 
power was to persuade the people, and to do that 
there was need of eloquence, the faculty of putting a 
case clearly and attractively. Even without aiming 
at political influence a citizen of Athens was always 
liable to plead before a law court. The courts were 
miniature popular assemblies, the jurors numbering 
about five hundred, and plaintiffs and defendants had 
to appear in person and deliver their speeches 
themselves, though in course of time they were 
often written for them by professional orators. The 
need of training in rhetoric was therefore very 
general. This was supplied by a class of teachers 
who made it their business to instruct young men 
after they had left school. They came from various 
parts of Greece, and lectured in various cities, but 
Athens attracted those of greatest eminence, and 
their lecture-rooms to a certain extent filled the 
place of a university. Though rhetoric was the 


most prominent subject of their teaching, some of 
them professed to give instruction in ethics and 
politics also, and they were known generally by 
the name of Sophists, or Professors of Wisdom. In 
a certain sense Socrates may be looked upon as the 
most eminent Sophist at Athens, though he dis- 
claimed the title, and would not give formal lectures, 
or receive fees. Still, some of the ablest young men 
frequented his company with the view of getting from 
his conversation and arguments something of the 
same instruction as that offered by the formal 
discourses of other Sophists. Of these travelling 
professors who became known at Athens the most 
prominent were : (i) Protagoras of Abdera, born 
about B.C. 480, who was in Athens about B.C. 411, 
from which city he was banished for the supposed 
atheistical tendency of his teaching. (2) Gorgias of 
Leontini, in Sicily, who, born about the same time as 
Protagoras, is said to have lived more than a hundred 
years. He visited Athens in B.C. 427 as an ambas- 
sador from his native town. He was a rhetorician 
rather than a Sophist or philosopher, and it is as 
such that Plato treats him. (3) Polus of Agrigentum, 
who was also a professional rhetorician, and seems 
to have been at Athens about the same time as 
Gorgias. (4) Hippias of Elis, about the same time, 
was a man of many accomplishments and seems to 
have lectured on many subjects — rhetoric, politics, 
ethics, mathematics, and art. He, too, served his 
country as an ambassador to Sparta. A man who 
professed such encyclopaedic knowledge was pretty 
certain not to have gone very deeply into any. Yet 


lie enjoyed a great reputation, and gained much 
money as he travelled from city to city. (5) Prodicus 
of Ceos, who is said to have exercised much influence 
upon Socrates in early life. He was best known for 
certain apologues or fables bearing upon morals and 
right conduct. The well-known fable of the "Choice 
of Hercules," in which virtue and vice describe to 
the young hero the two paths of life which they 
alternately urge him to take, is preserved in the 
Memorabilia of Xenophon. 

As these Sophists depended for their living on the 
power to draw large classes of young men in the 
various cities which they visited, they had not only 
to embellish their discourses with such attractive 
episodes, but to study to make their style and 
language striking, novel, or ornate. It would be 
impossible for them to treat philosophical questions 
profoundly or in an over-technical spirit. They had 
to be popular, but their teaching seems to have been 
suggestive, and on the whole on the side of right. 
The sort of sensation which they wished to create 
among the young men of ability in the various cities 
visited, has been well illustrated by Plato's account 
of the arrival of Protagoras in Athens. He makes 
Socrates describe how he was roused before day- 
break one morning by an enthusiastic friend, an- 
nouncing in a state of violent excitement that 
Protagoras had arrived, the wisest man and most 
accomplished speaker in the world. He insists on 
Socrates rising at once and accompanying him to 
the house of Callias where Protagoras is staying 
When they arrived they were roughly repulsed 



by the porter, irritated by the crowd of visitors, 
and were with difficulty admitted. When they 
got in they found Protagoras walking round the 
cloistered court, with a number of the most dis- 
tinguished young Athenians walking in line with 
him on either hand, while a crowd of other young 
men followed respectfully behind, whom the charm 
of his eloquence had drawn from the several cities 
he had visited to follow him. Socrates was amused 
to notice how neatly the crowd managed never to 
get in front of him. When he turned it opened 
to let him pass and then fell in again behind. In 
other parts of the same court were Hippias and 
Prodicus, each with his band of admirers, but Pro- 
tagoras is the chief centre of attraction, and to him 
Socrates addresses himself with a politeness which, 
though tinged with irony, is yet reverential in tone 
and manner. The scene is dramatic, yet it doubtless 
represents in its main features the sort of thing 
which occurred when famous Sophists visited a 
Greek city. The welcome that philosophers found 
at Athens — tempered by peremptory expulsion if 
their tenets were regarded as dangerous — tended to 
make it the natural home of philosophy and 
gradually to become a kind of university, to which 
young men resorted to complete their education. 
There they found a variety of schools to suit their 
particular tastes and needs, founded and endowed 
with houses and other property by their original 
teachers or subsequent adherents. Thus Plato 
(B.C. 427-347) taught for many years in the gymna- 
sium outside the walls called Academeia, whence 


PLATO, B.C. 427-347. 

From the IJermat. Berlin. 


the school of philosophy as developed by his 
successors took its name. Of all the philosophers 
Plato is the greatest man of letters and master of 
style. His philosophy, though it inspired and still 
inspires many men of genius or special aptitude, was 
too purely ideal and critical to have much influence 
on ordinary people, and his successors — while pro- 
fessing to found themselves on him — reached in time 
a position of almost complete scepticism, which is 
never popular with the masses who desire, above all 
things, from their teachers something clear and 
definite. Nor did he, like the Sophists, give what 
was needed for practical life ; for he neither professed 
nor taught the art of rhetoric. 

His pupil Aristotle — the next founder of a school 
— was born at Stageiros, but passed much of his 
time at Athens, first in his early youth, and later 
on (after having been for four years tutor to 
Alexander the Great) during another thirteen years 
(B.C. 335-322). His followers and successors were 
called " peripatetics," from the peripatos or covered 
walk in the Lyceium, where, for a time at any rate, he 
met his pupils. The prominent feature in the Peri- 
patetic philosophy is the abandonment of the " ideal " 
theories of Plato as to the origin of knowledge, and 
the adoption of the " inductive " method — the collec- 
tion of facts from which knowledge is derived by 
reason. Aristotle himself was encyclopaedic in his 
range of knowledge and interest. He wrote treatises 
on nearly every subject — on ethics, rhetoric, poetry, 
politics, metaphysics, and many branches of physics. 
These treatises have formed the basis of modern 


advances in philosophy and science, and have there- 
fore profoundly influenced the best intellects of all 
ages. Still this school did not immediately affect 
society in the same way as the two next schools 
founded at Athens, which long retained their head- 
quarters there — the Epicureans and the Stoics. 
The doctrines of Epicurus (B.C. 342-270) radically 
changed the views of a large number of people in the 
two points which concern men most obviously — 
religion and morals. In regard to the former, though 
Epicurus did not deny the existence of gods, he 
regarded them as unconcerned with the world and 
men, living apart in endless bliss, not interfering in 
the world which they did not create and would not 
guide. The origin of the universe he explained — as 
the earlier philosophers, Leucippus, Anaxagoras, and 
Democritus, had done — by the theory of innumerable 
atoms combining by natural or accidental causes in 
infinite space. By this doctrine he claimed to have 
freed mankind from the long tyranny of superstition 
and fear. The soul was a function of the body and 
with the body dissolved at death. In death, there- 
fore, there were no terrors, " for as long as we are 
death is not with us, and when death comes then we 
are not." Lucretius, whose poem interpreted Epicurus 
to the Romans, dwells on this point, as Tennyson 
makes him say — 

"'Till that hour 
My golden work in which I told a truth 
That stays the rolling Ixionian wheel, 
And numbs the Fury's ringlet-snake, and plucks 
The mortal soul from out immortal hell 
Shall stand !" 

Pht ! ] 

ARISTOTLE, B.C. 384-322. 

[Spada Palace.) 



As to the ethical end, or summum boiuim, he affirmed 
it to be pleasure (//Soy//) ; it is for this that we 
cultivate the virtues and wisdom itself. This doctrine 
was liable to be misunderstood by those who failed 
to take into account the life-teaching of Epicurus, 
which enforced the truth that many immediate 
pleasures were to be avoided in order to attain true 
pleasure. This at once gave room and motive for 
the practice of virtue. On the other hand, as the 
highest pleasures are to be found in freedom from 
agitation, the Epicurean was exhorted to seek a life 
of retirement and to avoid public business. Such a 
philosophy was easily misinterpreted and became 
the creed of the rich and idle, or at best of the 
learned and cultured in Greece and Rome, rather 
than of the multitude or of the more strenuous and 
active members of the governing class. 

Stoicism, on the other hand, inspired some of the 
best and finest natures for many centuries. It was 
founded about B.C. 300 by Zeno, and got its name 
from the Stoa Poikile at Athens, where he taught. 
In Ethics it held up a higher ideal than Epicureanism. 
Happiness (tvSatjjiovia), not pleasure (ijSov//), was, 
according to the Stoics, the end of action, or summum 
bonum ; but that is equivalent to living in harmony 
with Nature, and that again is equivalent to virtue. 
It is virtue, therefore, which is alone choice-worthy 
for its own sake and without regard to fear or hope 
or anything external to itself. Virtue again is one ; 
wisdom, self-control, justice, courage are only various 
exhibitions of it. The contraries to these are all 
included in vice, which, like virtue, is one. There is 


no middle term. An action is good or bad. All 
other things affecting men are indifferent (adiaQopa), 
such as life and death, honour and dishonour, labour 
and pleasure, wealth and poverty, health and sickness. 
The perfectly wise man (and he alone) is perfectly 
virtuous and perfectly happy without regard to any 
of these external circumstances. Though the equality 
of all breaches of duty would seem to make social 
and political institutions useless, yet Stoics were 
encouraged to enter into ordinary life and business, 
for they alone are capable of true brotherhood and 
the highest social life. The religion of Stoicism 
contained practically the doctrine of Monotheism. 
One God, of infinite purity, was the origin of all 
things, existing independently, and furnishing the 
vital principle which quickened dead matter. In 
another point of view it is a doctrine of Pantheism — 
God is everything and everything is God. Providence 
is not idle, but watches over and directs the universe 
according to fixed laws and destiny. The human 
soul, connected with the world-soul, is infused into 
the body, has a distinct existence and form, and is 
separated from the body by death. These doctrines 
commended the Stoic system, with its lofty rules of 
conduct and reverential views of Nature, to many of 
the best minds in antiquity ; and that Athens should 
have been the city in which all these philosophies 
flourished side by side gave her for many centuries 
a unique place in the admiration and regard of 
mankind. The highest flight of Stoic views on God 
and Nature may be here partially illustrated by an 
extract from a hymn or prayer composed by 


Cleanthes, who succeeded Zeno as head of the 
school in B.C. 265 : — 

" Hail ! most glorious of immortal beings, of many 
names, almighty for ever, Zeus, lord of Nature, that 
guidest all things by law ! To thee all mortals may 
make their prayer : for of thee are we sprung, having 
alone of mortal things which live and move upon the 
earth been dowered with a likeness of thy voice. 
Therefore of thee will I sing and ever hymn thy 
might. Thee all this heavenly frame, rolling round 
the earth, obeys, — by whatever path thou leadest it, — 
and owns thee for its lord. . . . King art thou, 
supreme, for ever ! Nothing is wrought on earth 
apart from thee, oh God, nor in the realm of air 
divine nor in the sea, save what the wicked work by 
their own lack of wisdom- But thou knowest to 
make the crooked straight, to bring order out of 
chaos, to atone strife. For so hast thou yoked 
together evil with good that order ariseth therefrom, 
one, eternal. But the wicked will have none of it. 
Miserable men ! they ever yearn to possess the 
good, yet look not on the impartial law of God, nor 
hearken thereto, which, if they would obey it, would 
give them good life. Whereas of their own act they 
rush upon evil, one with another, some seeking glory 
with ill-starred rivalry, some set on gain heedless of 
right or wrong, some given over to loose living and 
the pleasures of the body. . . . But, oh Zeus, that 
givest all, oh God of the dark cloud and the vivid 
lightning, save thou men from folly that beareth 
bitter fruit ! Scatter it from our soul, oh Father, and 
grant that we attain unto wisdom, whereby thou 


rulest all things aright, that so being honoured, we 
may requite thee with honour, hymning thy works 
for ever, as beseemeth a mortal man : for to none on 
earth is there nobler task, nor to those in heaven, 
than rightfully to hymn the Universal Law ! " 

The earliest literature which formed the staple 
of the education described above consisted of the 
Homeric poems and the Epic cycle, which not only 
served later poets as an inexhaustible store-house 
of legend and myth, but was regarded by the Greeks 
generally as the source of their knowledge of the 
antiquities and early history of their country, and the 
most authoritative exposition of religion. Of the 
great mass of this ballad literature there have sur- 
vived only the Iliad and the Odyssey and the Hymns. 
The rest — the Cypria, the Aethiopica, the Sack of 
Troy, the Little Iliad, the Returns, the Thebais and 
Epigoni (the two last not connected with Troy, but 
Thebes) — were known rather to the literary class 
than to the people generally from the sixth century 
B.C. It was the Iliad and Odyssey, as collected and 
edited under Peisistratus for the Athenians, and by 
others for other states, which formed the Bible of 
Greece : quoted to settle questions of state boundaries 
and other historical claims, and examined for teaching 
in morals and theology. It is true that in the fifth 
and fourth centuries Socrates and Plato, and perhaps 
other philosophers, objected to the attribution of 
human passions, disputes, and violent quarrels to the 
gods which is found in Homer, and wished to forbid 
these poems and others like them being used in the 
education of the young. But this was not the view 


of the ordinary man. The)' were widely known and 
received with simple acquiescence. Though written 
copies were few, yet professional reciters, or Rhap- 
sodes, travelled from town to town, and in the halls 
of princes or on village greens charmed their hearers 
with the familiar tale, set out in the stately hexameter, 
than which no metre ever devised is more musical 
and simple. Most of the listeners had learnt long 
portions of it at school and knew the characters of 
the chief heroes and their fortunes, had been stirred 
to terror or pity by the wrath of Achilles and his 
passionate sorrow for Patroclus, by the parting of 
Hector and Andromache, or the pathetic courage of 
the aged Priam venturing into the Greek camp to 
ransom the body of his heroic son from the hand 
that had slain him. They learnt, as they listened, 
how an overmastering Fate bound the gods them- 
selves, how Zeus ruled with Justice as his assessor, 
and how all that sustained or concerned mortals was 
divine or divinely directed — the air they breathed, 
the ocean that surrounded the world, the fire that 
ministered to their needs, the sun, moon, and stars 
that gave them light, the earth that nurtured and 
fed them, the wisdom that guided their steps aright, 
and the folly that bred presumption and involved 
men in ruin. In the Iliad they found the first 
elements of ordered government, the necessity of 
approaching the gods by prayer and sacrifice, the 
discipline of a camp, the earliest form of those 
athletic contests which played so large a part in 
their own lives, and the funeral rites due to the 
gallant dead. The Odyssey is different. It is a tale 


of travel and adventure, with pictures ever and again 
of still life. To sea-going folk like the Greeks, who 
for many generations had been sending off swarms 
of their kindred in search of fresh homes in distant 
lands, its recitation must have stirred the imagination 
and roused curiosity in a hundred ways ; and the 
descent of the hero to Hades is the earliest view 
we have of the vague terror of the hereafter, which 
has inevitably been encountered sooner or later 
by all peoples whose minds have in any way been 
roused to speculate on the mystery of life and 

Connected with this there seems to have been at 
one time a considerable mass of poetry which may 
be classed as " Orphic," from Orpheus, the chief 
reputed author. It dealt generally with the mystic 
interpretation of the received theology, and treated 
of the rites of initiation and symbolic cleansing that 
atoned for sin or gave hopes of a life to come. Thus 
initiation in the Eleusinian mysteries was said " to 
cause those who shared in them to have sweeter 
hopes concerning the end of life and all eternity." 
" Happy he," says Pindar, " who has seen these 
mysteries before he goes below the earth ! He 
knows the end of life, and knows its divinely-given 
beginning." But though traces of these doctrines or 
imaginings may perhaps be found in most extant 
Greek poetry, the original poems of this class are 
lost. Those that now go under the name are of 
very late origin. Greek country life, however, has its 
epic in the " Works and Days " of Hesiod (of uncer- 
tain date), which contains a kind of manual of the 


life and work of a Boeotian farmer set in a mass of 
homely maxims or proverbs, presenting a curious 
mixture of shrewd worldly wisdom and primitive 

The next class of Greek literature, of which we 
have any considerable fragments, is that of the 
Lyric and Elegiac poets from the seventh century. 
Lyrical poetry is poetry meant to be sung to music, 
and it is naturally more personal and fervent than 
other kinds of verse. But this fervour was of two 
kinds — that of passion, and that of political excite- 
ment. To the former class belong the poems 
of SArPHO of Lesbos (about B.C. 610), of whom, 
besides some less important, there remain two con- 
siderable fragments which are marvellously beautiful 
both in language and in the passion that inspires 

ALC/EUS (about 610-580 B.C.) was also of Lesbos, 
and took an active part in the political struggles in 
the island, first on the side of the nobles against the 
democrats, and then against Pittacus when (about 
B.C. 606) he became tyrant or dictator. We have 
much less of his poetry left, but such short fragments 
as remain, along with the imitations of Horace, let us 
see that his muse was inspired by his own activities 
and controversies, varied by the usual praises of wine 
as the true consoler. Love he seems not to have 
cared for. He coined one phrase at least which was 
copied in various shapes by many Greek writers after 
him — " Brave men are a city's real tower of strength," 
and perhaps another when he said that " Wine was a 
mirror to mankind," or again, " Wine, dear boy, and 


truth." From a later Lyric poet — Simonides of Ceos 
(B.C. 556-468) — we have again some valuable remains, 
especially one beautiful hymn or dirge describing 
Danae afloat in the wooden chest with her infant 
son ; and also a stanza of nine brilliant lines on the 
dead at Thermopylae— 

"Whose winding-sheet is fame, which no decay 
Nor all-subduing time shall fret away." 

But the lyric art was carried to its highest perfection 
by Pindar (about B.C. 521-442), of whose work, how- 
ever, we have only that part which consisted of 
hymns of Victory, that is, odes celebrating victors in 
the great games. Though a Boeotian, and residing at 
Thebes, Pindar was employed to write these odes by 
men of all states, and his plan was to say little about 
the individual victor, but to dilate upon the legends 
concerned, sometimes only remotely, with his native 
country or supposed ancestry. 1 The influence of 
these poems was national just because of this detach- 
ment from a personal or local view of things. The 
legends were the common heritage of Greece, handed 
down from heroic times, and representing the highest 
aspirations of the people. They are also so repre- 
sented as to soften or explain away those stories 
which attributed immoral or unjust actions to the 

1 Other Lyric poets were of the ^olian school, with Sappho 
Alaeus, Anacreon [circ. B.C. 530); of the Dorian school, Alcman, 
Stesichorus, Arion, Ibycus (B.C. 660-540) ; contemporary with Pindar, 
and writing in somewhat the same style, Bacchylides of Ceos, and four 
women, Myrtis and Corinna of Boeotia, Telesilla of Argos, and Praxilla 
of Sicyon. 

Pindar* s view of life 369 

gods. He shows himself now and again in touch 
with the great military events of his age, as when 
he speaks of Artemisium, " where the sons of the 
Athenians laid a brilliant foundation of liberty." 
But he is not fond of war, and in later times Polybius 
censured him for his support of his countrymen in 
their non-resistance to the Persians, as a peace-at- 
any-price man. And, indeed, peace is dear to him — 
she is a "kindly" goddess, a "daughter of Justice," 
" holding the keys of counsel and war." His views 
on a future life were mostly expressed in his Threnoi, 
or dirgies, of which only a few fragments remain. He 
describes the sun which makes the lower world light 
to its inhabitants, the meadows with their bright 
flowers and golden fruits, and the spirits engaged in 
the games or exercises in which they took pleasure 
on earth, cheered by music, rich banquets, fragrant 
odours, and burnt sacrifices. Death in his view is a 
relief from toil, especially happy for those who have 
been initiated in the mysteries. Still, there is a 
distinction between the good and the bad. To 
some favoured souls there is the hope that after 
due purification they may be restored to the 
upper air, and animate the bodies of the great and 

Elegiac poetry was used chiefly as a means of 
exhortation and encouragement to bravery in war, 
or to set out certain views as to politics and social 
conduct, or, lastly, to furnish epitaphs for those who 
fell in war. The earliest writer known to us is 
Callinus of Ephesus (about B.C. 700), the one frag- 
ment of whose work of any length is a kind of address 



by a general to his soldiers exhorting them not to 
fear death : — 

"With dying hand still hurl the quivering spear! 
Death takes the brave and those no less who fear. 
The coward flies the field to find his fate 
Crouching to slay him at his father's gate. 
He falls with few to mourn and none to praise, 
And crowns with shameful death inglorious days." 

TYRT.^US (about B.C. 6$ 5-668) migrated from 
Athens to Sparta, and wrote marching songs and 
stirring exhortations to the Spartans to fight to the 
death against the Messenians, as well as a poem 
named Eunomia, meant to allay party conflicts in 
Sparta. One tradition represented him as a lame 
schoolmaster, whom the Athenians contemptuously 
sent to Sparta in answer to an appeal for help, and 
who turned out to be the greatest benefit they could 
have sent for the spirit which his verses inspired in 
the Spartan youth. The poems either aim at making 
the Spartans proud of their country and its customs, 
or exhort the young men to gallantry. " The most 
desirable death is that which comes in the forefront 
of the fight, if the youth wishes to be praised of men 
and loved of women. He dies, but lives for ever : he 
is mourned and honoured by old and young. If he 
plays the coward, shame covers him, and life is a 
misery : he must wander forth a beggar with wife 
and child, loathed and contemned by all." 

The poems of SOLON {c. B.C. 620-560) are more 
peaceful and political, though the earliest is an 
exhortation to the Athenians to secure by arms the 


island of Salami's. In the later ones, however, his 
chief themes are the beauty and advantage of good 
order and government, and the problem of reconciling 
them with freedom, the danger of wealth and cor- 
ruption, the superiority of virtue to vice, of modera- 
tion to pride and presumption. There are reflections 
also on the various problems of life — the prosperity 
of the wicked, the mysterious ways of providence, as 
well as certain details of his own personal habits and 
thoughts ; and a description of the ten stages of a 
man's life in periods of seven years. The most com- 
plete extant work of the Elegiac poets is that of 
THEOGNIS of Megara (B.C. 540 about). It consists of 
a series of short poems, varying, as a rule, from four 
to eight lines (though some are longer) addressed to 
a certain Cyrnus. They contain a curious medley of 
practical observations and precepts adapted to the 
life of the Dorian nobles with whom he lived. Some- 
times he is cynical, sometimes practical and acute, 
but he is never very poetical or interesting. The 
Elegiacs of Simonides, whose lyrics have been already 
noticed, are mostly epitaphs on those fallen in the 
war, or on men with whom he had some special tie 
of interest. A specimen in a lighter vein, almost 
" let us eat and drink, for to-morrow we die," will 
show a different side of his genius : — 

" ' Nothing human that will hold,' — 
Sang the Chian bard of old. 
r As the leaves are so are we, 
Yet how few to hear are free, 
And to store within their heart 
Lessons that the wise impart ! 


Hope is stronger far than truth, 
While the blood is warm with youth, 
While the bloom is on the cheek- 
Passion strong and wisdom weak — 
Age, disease, and death are dim 
To the sound in wind and limb. 
Blind and thoughtless ! lo, for man, 
Youth and life — how short their span ! 
Knowing, then, how quick time flies, 
Snatch all pleasures as they rise.' " 

Numerous epigrams in Elegiac metre * have been 
preserved in the Anthology, some of them attributed 
to writers famous in other departments of literature, 
as, for instance, Plato. One exquisite stanza, rightly 
or wrongly attributed to him, may be quoted: — 

" Thou gazest on the stars, my star ! 
Oh would I were the skies. 
That I might look on thee afar 
With all those myriad eyes ! " 

ARCHILOCHUS is said to have first used the 
Iambic metre in personal satire, "rage armed Archi- 

1 Other Elegiac and Iambic poets are Archilochus (about B.C. 670), 
who was also known best for his Iambics ; Simonides of Amorgos 
(about B.C. 660); Phocylides of Miletus (about B.C. 540), who also 
wrote Hexameters; Xenophanes of Colophon (about B.C. 510), the 
Eleatic philosopher ; Hipponax of Ephesus (about B.C. 540), wrote 
Scazons, i.e , Iambics with a spondee in the last foot, copied afterwards 
by Callimachus (about B.C. 240) and Babrius, the fabulist (about A.D. 
40). The Planudean Anthology was collected by Planudes Maximus, a 
monk of Constantinople (about A.D. 1330). There were other Antho- 
logies : the most important is that called the Palatine Anthology, made 
by Constantinus Cephalus in the tenth century A.D., and rediscovered 
in Heidelberg in the library of the Palatine electors in 1606, by 
Salmasius. This is now the standard Greek Anthology. 


lochus with his own Iambic," says Horace ; and the 
story is told how he drove the daughters of Lycambes 
to hang themselves by the bitterness of his attacks. 
There is little in the fragments that remain to explain 
such a story, though there is a truculent tone and a 
suggestion of personal attack in most of the lines : 
11 One great lesson I have learnt, to retaliate on those 
who use me ill with a sharp return of evil." Yet he 
is the earliest to enunciate one generous sentiment 
which has become proverbial : " Tis no noble thing 
to malign the dead." 

SlMONlDES of Amorgos (about B.C. 660) seems to 
have taken a melancholy view of men and things. 
One of the two considerable extracts that survive 
contains a catalogue of the miseries of man — his 
helplessness in the presence of fate, his baffled hopes, 
the brevity of his life and the various accidents that 
bring it to an end. The other is a curious satire on 
women whose bad qualities he deduces from the 
several beasts of which they are compounded ; yet 
in another short fragment he can say : — 

"A man can find no better prize in life 
Than a good woman ; than an evil one 
No greater torment." 

The shortness of life and the endlessness of death 
he perhaps thought balanced each other : — 

" Death, were we wise, would seem but one long day." 

"The time for being dead for man is long, 
But few and evil are the days we live." 


This melancholy, indeed, finds expression very early 
in Greek literature, and can be traced through many 
generations of it, as perhaps of all literatures, taking 
the form of resignation or despair, angry protest 
against providence, or faith in an unseen power, 
according to the character of the individual or 
his age. 

The fifth century saw the rise of the Athenian 
Drama. Of this literature once so copious we 
have only plays remaining from three Tragic poets, 
^Eschylus, Sophocles, and Euripides (between B.C. 525 
and 405). The foundation of a Greek Play was the 
Choric Song, which being for the most part of 
Dorian origin, continued by a literary convention 
to be written in the Doric dialect, though with 
considerable modifications. The first step towards 
a play was the employment of an actor to hold a 
dialogue with the leader of the chorus. ^Eschylus 
(B.C. 525-456) added a second actor — and perhaps 
a third — and thus the drama, as we have it, became 
possible. In the tragedies of ^Eschylus the chorus 
plays a much more conspicuous part than in those 
of Sophocles, and still more so than in Euripides. 
In form, however, the plays are, roughly, on the 
same model, but the poets differ considerably in 
style and in their view of life, of duty, and provi- 
dence. Yet there are certain characteristics common 
to all three arising chiefly from the peculiar circum- 
stances of their age. Thus they are all affected by 
the rising need and use of oratory. In every play 
speeches delivered either by the persons chiefly 
affected, or by some messenger describing the catas- 


JSCHYLUS, B.C. 525-426. 
{Capitoline Museum.) 



trophe, are prominent, and are composed with 
great skill, though with increasing indication of 
rhetorical training as time goes on. Again, they 
have all three been affected by philosophical specula- 
tion. It has had a very different influence on each, 
as we shall see, but still it is there. Thirdly, they 
all take occasion to glorify Athens, either directly 
or by implication. Again, all alike found their 
plots on legends or myths already known from 
Homer or the Cyclic poets or by common tradition. 
They were, therefore, familiar to their audiences. 
The originality of the poets was shown in delinea- 
tion of character displayed in circumstances already 
known, or in the rearrangement of details so as to 
bring about the catastrophe demanded by the 
dramatic situation. Euripides was distinguished 
from the other two by the freedom with which he 
treated his material, and the more human and less 
heroic traits of his characters. 

Their point of view in regard to the deeper 
problems of life was also different. ^Eschylus 
looked at things principally from the religious 
side. The eternal laws of God, the punishment of 
sin, reaching through generations, the inevitable 
doom waiting not only blood-guiltiness, but also 
impious presumption and contempt of justice. It 
is these doctrines rather than the delineation of 
character on which he is intent. Thus in the 
"Suppliant Women," in which Danaus and his 
daughters fly to Argos to avoid marriage with 
their cousins, the sons of /Egyptus, the women and 
their father are almost lay figures, the King of 


Argos (not named) merely represents the sovereign 
conscious of his duty to suppliants. The reason 
of the women's objection to the marriage is hardly 
expressed, but force is wrong, the abandonment of 
suppliants is a breach of religion, and the Divine 
punishment of both is certain : 

" Nay, not though he be dead and in the Unseen 
Will he escape— the worker of such deeds. 
E'en there, they say, among the shades there sits 
Another Zeus to render final doom 
On sin that man commits." 

In the Persians, again, which represents the horror 
with which news of the defeat of Xerxes at Salamis 
is received in Persia, what the poet cares for most 
is to show the punishment of pride and presumption, 
and of the sacrilege committed by burning the 
temples in Greece. Xerxes, though a mortal, 
expected to be able to defy the gods. He put 
chains upon the sea — the divine Hellespont : his 
army coming to Hellas scrupled not to burn the 
images and the temples of the gods and to overturn 
their altars. Thence came his fall : — 

" 111 fares the man whose heart is swollen with pride, — 
High pride that breaking into flower gives forth 
A deadly crop — a harvest all of tears." 

In the Seven against Thebes it is the effect of a 
father's curse and the inevitable and abiding con- 
sequences of sin that the poet is illustrating. When 
CEdipus blinded himself in horror at his involuntary 
crime his sons Eteocles and Polynices imprisoned 


him and agreed to share his kingdom. He curses 
them, and presently the curse is fulfilled. Eteocles 
expels Polynices, who, with six other heroes, comes 
to take Thebes. The brothers fall by mutual slaughter. 
"Since they have fallen by each other's deadly 
hands and the dust has the black blood of murder, 
who shall bring purifications ? Who shall wash them 
clean ? A new curse upon the house has become 
involved with an old taint, an old sin swift to bring 
its penalty, and abiding to the third generation." 
At the end of the play Antigone announces her 
intention to defy the order of the State and to bury 
her brother. The consequences are not brought out 
in this play : her words stand as a declaration of 
sisterly affection, and a protest against the breach 
of divine law involved in the refusal of funeral rites 
to the dead. 

In the Trilogy — Agamemnon, Choeplwroi, and 
Eumenides — ^Eschylus returns to the cycle of the 
Trojan legend. Here, again, we have a curse 
abiding to the third generation, but it is made clear 
how human presumption and sin co-operate with it 
It can only be stayed by divine interposition. Still 
Zeus is not the author of sin, but the establisher of 
an immutable law which makes sorrow its certain 
sequel (Ag. 167) : — 

" He will be wise who from his heart proclaims 
Zeus lord of all and conqueror, 
Who unto wisdom leadeth men by pain — 
Pain yoked to learning by his changeless law. 

It is not God, but the incalculable capacity of men 


and women for passion and its consequences that is 
accountable for such horrors as have haunted the 
house of Atreus (Choeph. 576) : — 

" Many the forms of woe and fear 
And shuddering pain the earth doth bear ; 
And in the ocean's wide embrace 
Swarm myriad shapes of monstrous race. 
With warnings close to dazzled eyes 
Dread meteors shoot athwart the skies : 
Foreboding birds and beasts can speak 
What wrath the hurricanes will wreak. 
But who can tell what heights of crime 
Man's hardened soul will dare to climb, 
Or passion in a woman's breast 
By no controlling awe suppressed, 
Passion that, harbouring still with pain, 
Brings all things deadly in her train ? '' 

The man that in the pride of his heart spurns the 
dictates of justice and righteousness, vainly calls on 
the gods, whom he neglected in his day of prosper- 
ous wickedness. They will laugh when his trouble 
cometh (Eum. 528): — 

" Caught in the racing current, which no skill 
Or force avails to stem, 
Loud are his cries to those who will not hear, 
Or hearing answer them. 

Hot-headed fool ! the headland's deadly point 

He thought with ease to clear ! 
God laughs to see him in the grip of fate, 

In woe he did not fear. 

Upon the reef of Justice strikes his keel, 

His long-stored wealth is gone ; 
Sudden he passes to the eternal night 

Unseen, unwept, alone." 


Though the Eumenides, from which this last extract 
is taken, had a narrower and more local object, 
namely, to support the prestige and authority of the 
Areopagus, it contains, like the other plays of the 
Trilogy, reiterated statements of a lofty faith in the 
justice of providence, in the punishment of sin and 
presumptuous pride, and in the eternal laws of right 
and wrong. It is the Prometheus that shows us the 
poet touched by the philosophic or rationalistic 
movement. Prometheus represents humanity strug- 
gling with the inequalities and injustice of the divine 
rule of the world. He suffers because he endowed 
men with "the knowledge of good and evil," and with 
the resources which tended to make them more 
equal to the gods, or, at any rate, less dependent 
upon them. The gift of fire which he brought them 
was the origin of all the arts and sciences which 
ameliorate life and make man self-sufficing, and the 
superiority of Zeus less marked. He is the martyr 
of humanity, and suffers because he defied a 
tyrannical and jealous power. He looks for consola- 
tion in converse with all the powers of nature, and 
claims fellowship with all those who had experienced 
the injustice of the gods. How can a man serve 
humanity nobly and unselfishly and yet be offensive 
to Heaven ? That is the problem which yEschylus 
has suggested, but has not solved. Prometheus is 
left in the full horror of his punishment, amidst the 
loud artillery of Heaven's wrath, still defying it and 
protesting against its injustice. 

As a specimen of the narrative style of ^Eschylus, 
the following extract from the account of the battle 


of Salamis, put in the mouth of a Persian messenger 
may perhaps serve (Per. 384) : — 

" So all night long the masters of the ships 
Held all their folk to labour at the oar, 
Thridding the narrow seas ; and night waned fast 
Yet never did the Hellenes raise a sail 
Or seek to make a secret way of flight. 
But when the white car of the risen day 
Held all the earth with the sweet rays of dawn, 
First rang there forth from the Hellenic host 
A loud clear note, like to some joyous hymn ; 
And sharp and clear from rock and island came 
An answering echo. Cold on Persian hearts 
Struck sudden fear : for other than we deemed 
The tale that paean told ! Not as for flight 
This solemn strain issued from Grecian lips, 
But as of men with hearts of high resolve 
Eager for battle. Then rang shrill and clear 
A clarion, filling all the bay with sound : 
And straight with even stroke of dashing oars, 
That fell responsive to the master's voice, 
They smote the yielding bosom of the deep, 
And in brief space stood out before our eyes 
Full plain to see. The right wing led the way 
In order fair ; and following hard astern 
The whole long fleet streamed on, not silently, 
But with shouts manifold and plain to hear ; 
1 Sons of the Greeks arise ! your country free ! 
Free home, and wife> and child, your grandsires' tombs, 
And all the seats loved of your fathers' gods ! ' 
Nor were we silent : Persian lips gave back 
Challenge for challenge. And now the hour was come." 

In Sophocles (B.C. 495-405) we find less insist- 
ence on the religious aspect of life, though little 
rebellion against Providence. To him the highest 
study of mankind is man. Human passions, 


SOPHOCLES, B.C. 495-405. 

[Lateran Museum.) 


pride, wounded honour, remorse, jealous)-, and self- 
will are traced remorselessly to their inevitable 
results. Yet the outlook is not all black ; the 
picture is relieved by instances of noble courage 
and loyal devotion. CEdipus passes from unreasoning 
confidence to equally unreasoning despair. In his 
misery and self-inflicted blindness he still retains 
the hard inflexible temper towards his disloyal sons, 
which no amount of personal failure or horror for an 
unwitting sin has served to soften. Ajax is driven 
to madness by wounded self-love. Philoctetes is 
weak in everything but resentment. Clytemnestra is 
a woman whose wickedness is unredeemed by any 
touch of tenderness or natural feeling. But Electra 
is a noble nature, though placed in circumstances 
too difficult for her strength. Antigone is altogether 
great m affection and courage ; Tecmessa shows 
touching loyalty and devotion to her husband ; and 
Neoptolemus, though persuaded by the cunning of 
Odysseus to enter upon an ungenerous intrigue, in 
the end retrieves his good name and proves the real 
nobility of his nature. Of love scenes in the modern 
sense there is little or nothing in the tragedians. 
Nearest to the picture of a lover, as we regard him, 
is perhaps Hsmon in the Antigone of Sophocles. 
But though he kills himself upon Antigone's death, 
it is more from horror than love. It leaves us cold 
after all. The love (tpwg) of the tragedians is mostly 
a baneful passion — irresistible, it is true, and divine, 
but almost always harmful in its effects — rather a 
heaven-sent plague than a divine blessing. In the 
famous invocation to " invincible love " in the Anti- 



gone, Sophocles dwells after all as much upon its 
baleful influence as upon its charm. 

EURIPIDES (B.C. 480-406), nearly contemporary 
with Sophocles, represents a different development 
of the drama. He is less confined to well-known 
and familiar subjects of mythology. His language 
is more careless of the conventional tragic style. 
He shows clearer signs of having been influenced by 
philosophical speculations in physics, religion, and 
morals, as well as by the fashionable study of 
rhetoric. His critics accused him of weakening the 
reverence for the gods, of dangerous moral teaching, 
of lowering the dignity of tragedy by representing 
heroic figures in mean or sordid circumstances, and 
particularly of maligning the character of women. 
Notably Aristophanes attacks him fiercely as a mere 
sophist, miserable as an artist, and harmful as a 
moralist, the apostle of modern scepticism, patron of 
quibbling and disingenuous arguments. Notwith- 
standing such attacks it seems certain that Euripides 
was the most popular of the three dramatists, that his 
plays and their choric songs were widely known and 
loved. Still Euripides was an innovator in many 
respects, and had to bear the fate of those who 
swerve from recognised paths. His heroes and 
heroines are human, their language is the language 
of common life, and the choruses in many cases do 
not form constituent parts of the play. They become 
as it were interludes between the scenes, and might 
sometimes be omitted without loss to the develop- 
ment of the plot. At one period of his life he was 
doubtless fond of putting in the mouth of his 

* \OT1H 




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EURIPIDES, B.C. 480-406. 



characters words thatreflected upon the received belief 
in the gods, and on the providential government of 
the universe. But, in the first place, it is dangerous 
to attribute to the poet all that he represents as the 
reflections of characters in a drama ; and, in the 
second place, if they are to be taken as the expres- 
sions of the poet's own sentiments, we cannot but 
sympathise with a spirit which felt the weight of the 
unsolved riddle of life, and rejected as impossible 
many of the solutions which were so easily admitted, 
by his contemporaries. One of these speculations, 
ridiculed by Aristophanes, seems to show a profound 
insight into the supreme difficulty — " Who knows 
whether our life is not a death, our death a life ? " Tig 
olStv el to Khv fiiv Igtl kcitOcivhv, to kotOcivuv £t Z,i}v ; 
The other sentence so often brought up against him, 
once even in a law court, to show that his oath 
could not be trusted — y) y\Coaa ofxwfj.o\ 1) §1 <j>p>)v 
avtvpoTog, " My tongue has sworn, but my mind is 
bound by no oath," — is put into the mouth of 
Hippolytus, who nevertheless braves death rather 
than break the oath. If again there are many evil 
things said of women in his plays, there are also 
many splendid testimonies to their high qualities, and 
the noble courage and devotion of Alcestis, Polyxena, 
Iphigeneia and Macaria. are proofs that Euripides 
could rise to the highest conception of womanly excel- 
lence. It must be remembered, moreover, that the 
literary activity of Euripides fell for the most part in 
the period immediately preceding the Peloponnesian 
war and during that war itself. It was a time in 
which party feeling ran high, and it would seem that 


Euripides was on the side of the war party, while 
Aristophanes and the conservatives generally were 
for accommodation with Sparta. Even after the 
peace of Nikias (B.C. 421) there was strong distrust 
of Sparta, which Euripides perhaps gave expression 
to when he made Andromache utter her fierce 
denunciation of Menelaus (Androm. 445): — 

" Of mortals hatefulest to the world of men, 
Dwellers in Sparta ! Crooked counsellors ! 
Kings among liars ! Patchers-up of evil, 
Tortuous, in nothing honest, with black souls 
Set on all cunning ! In the land of Greece 
Unjustly do ye lord it ! What dishonour 
Is lacking to you ? Murders manifold, 
Base seekers of base gains, are in your midst, 
And those who speak one thing with glozing lips 
And mean another — my curse light on you ! " 

If this at all represents the political feelings ol 
Euripides it is quite enough to account for the ani- 
mosity of Aristophanes. Towards the end of his life 
he retired to Macedonia, on the invitation of King 
Archelaus, and what is probably his latest play, 
the Bacchce, was written there. It is not easy to 
define the poet's object in this charming and pictu- 
resque drama, or how far it was meant to convey a 
recantation of his old opinions in religion. It seems 
at least to suggest that he had given up hope of solving 
deep questions, and was content to let things be. 

Of Attic Comedy we have only remaining the 
eleven plays of ARISTOPHANES (circa B.C. 444-380). 
These plays, with two exceptions, were produced 
during the Peloponnesian war. The Acharnians, the 


ARISTOPHANES, C. B.C. 444-380. 
[Uffizi Gallery, Florence.) 



KnightSy the Clouds, the Wasps, the Peace y and the 
/jV/v/t (between B.C. 425 and 413) are full of political 
allusion and denunciations. They are all on the side 
of peace and against the demagogues (especially 
Cleon), and anything else which the poet regards as 
characteristic of the democratic or war party. Thus 
in the Clouds he attacks the supposed atheistic and 
immoral tendency of the teaching of certain Sophists, 
of whom Socrates is unfairly made the representative. 
In the Wasps he shows up the ill effects of payment 
to the dicasts. The next two plays, the Thcsmo- 
phoriazuscc and Lysistrata (B.C. 411), join to political 
suggestions in the same direction a violent attack 
upon Euripides, which is repeated in the Frogs 
(B.C. 405). These plays may be classed as the Old 
Comedy, the distinguishing features of which are 
unscrupulous attacks upon living men, and a chorus 
of which the leader addresses the audience in the 
name of the poet in a long speech called the para- 
basis full of contemporary allusions. In the TJiesiuo- 
plioriazusce and Lysistrata, however, there is no 
parabasis, and they are sometimes classed as Middle 
Comedy. Two other plays remain — the Ecclesiazusce, 
" Women in Parliament," and the Plutus (B.C. 392). 
The political element is much modified in the former, 
and altogether absent in the latter. They have no para- 
basis, and they lead the way to a new style of comedy, 
— a comedy of manners, in which the choric element 
wholly disappears. This is called the " New 
Comedy," of which the chief writer was Menander 
of Athens (B.C. 342-291), of whom only fragments 
remain. We, however, have some knowledge of his 


work and that of other writers in this style from the 
plays of Plautus and Terence, which were translated, 
or at any rate adapted, from them. They give a 
picture of the domestic life in Greece as it was when 
politics were no longer of absorbing interest. The 
plots generally turn on the love adventures of young 
men, assisted by cunning or faithful slaves, frowned 
upon or pardoned by severe or indulgent fathers. 
In most there are seen those blots on Greek life — 
the habit of exposing infants, the trade of the slave- 
dealer in young girls, and the severities to which 
slaves themselves were exposed. The only outlet 
for the energies of active young men seems to be 
now the career of a mercenary soldier in the service 
of some of the successors of Alexander the Great. 
The picture of social and domestic life is not other- 
wise unkindly, and though there are the conventional 
gibes at women and marriage, there is a manifest 
appreciation of family confidence and purity. The 
parasite, or needy hanger-on, is an almost invariable 
feature in these plays, performing a part something 
between those of the chorus and the " messengers " 
in the old plays. He, too, is perhaps rather a stage 
convention than a representative of anything real. 
Along with these plays of the " New Comedy " there 
existed a sort of dramatic dialogue or " mime." 
These mimes seem to have belonged principally to 
outlying parts of Hellas. Those of Herondas 
(discovered in 1890) came from the cities on the 
Pontus, perhaps Cyzicus, and are written in the 
dialect used in those parts. They do not give a 
very agreeable picture of Greek life. 


MENANDER, B.C. 342-29I. 
( Vatican Museum. ) 



After the time of Alexander, literary activity 
tended to centre at Alexandria rather than Athens, 
which still, however, remained the headquarters of 
philosophy. Not that the poets were for the most 
part born at Alexandria ; they came from Sicily and 
other parts of Hellas, but they generally spent part 
of their life at Alexandria, where a school of critics 
gathered round the great Library, and made a 
natural centre for men of learning and letters. To 
this school, therefore, belong the epic poet Apollo- 
nius of Rhodes (c. B.C. 235), whose Argonautica is an 
imitation of the Homeric style, and the pastoral 
poets, Bion of Smyrna, Moschus and Theocritus of 
Syracuse (between B.C. 300 and 250). Of these 
Theocritus has left the largest amount of work and 
has had the greatest influence on succeeding writers. 
In his thirty-six Idylls there are the qualities whose 
charms are universal — freshness, humour, passion. 
The dramatic skill of his dialogues, such as that of 
the immortal fifteenth Idyll, satisfies every sense 
and taste. The country scenes and the pastoral 
background in which the poems are set have an 
extraordinary fascination. A short passage taken 
from the seventh Idyll, and describing a woodland 
retreat in the southern summer, may give us some 
idea of this charm. Two shepherds are resting 
after a walk on a couch of " sweet mastich and vine 
leaves " : — 

"Above us elm and poplar spread a roof 
Of quivering leaves. Hard by a sacred spring 
Leapt babbling from the grotto of the nymphs, 
'Neath shady sprays the brown cicala kept 


An endless chirping. Where the tree-frog haunts 
A distant murmur filled the bramble's maze. 
Soft cooed the doves, nor ever ceased the note 
Of lark and finch. About the water's edge 
This way and that hovered the yellow bees 
In tangled flight. The luscious summer's scent, 
The scent of autumn fruit-time, filled the air. 
Pears by our feet and apples at our sides 
Rolled in rich plenty, and the sloe-tree's boughs 
Dipped to the ground beneath their load of fruit." 

The Greek historians of the classic age have been 
noticed in the preceding pages and have supplied 
their substance. Historical writing began in Ionia, 
but the earliest writer whose work is extant came 
from the Doric colony of Halicarnassus in Caria. In 
the eyes of HERODOTUS (c. B.C. 484-425) the right 
preparation for writing history was travel. He there- 
fore visited most parts of Greece and of the Persian 
Empire, and made a careful study of Egypt — every- 
where asking questions and visiting famous places and 
buildings. He loved a good story and tells it with 
consummate skill, but he is nevertheless careful to 
distinguish between what he thinks can be proved and 
what depends upon mere report. His work is also 
conceived in an epic spirit. All his researches and 
episodical narratives contribute to one great theme — 
the struggle of East and West, and lead up to one 
catastrophe — the victory of moderation and disci- 
pline over pride and luxury. TlIUCYDIDES, son of 
Olorus (about B.C. 471-401), confined himself to 
describing one episode in Greek history, the Pelo- 
ponnesian War, though his first book contains a 
valuable summary of the early history of Greece. 


He only lived to complete the story of that war 
to the year B.C. 411. Herodotus had used the Ionic 
dialect, either because he had become familiar with 
it during his residence at Samos, or because of 
a literary tradition from the earliest historians of 
Miletus (Hecataeus and Hellanicus) ; but Thucydides 
was an Athenian, and the Attic dialect in his time 
was becoming the language of literature. He has 
many of the highest qualities of an historian, patient 
accuracy, large and sagacious insight, and on great 
occasions a supreme power of vivid representation. 
But his style is often complex and obscure, and his 
idea of representing his views dramatically by com- 
posing speeches to be put into the mouths of the 
actors in the great events, set a precedent which was 
unfortunate. XENOPHON (c. B.C. 431-354) continued 
the narrative of Thucydides in his Hellenica down to 
B.C. 362. He was neither a great artist nor possessed 
of any deep insight ; but he excels in a certain 
simplicity and directness of statement. He wrote 
many things besides this history : the narrative of 
the march of the ten thousand Greeks who accom- 
panied Cyrus in the expedition against his brother ; 
the life of King Agesilaus ; essays in various political 
and agricultural subjects ; and two political romances, 
the Hiero and Cyropaedeia. In his youth he was 
much influenced by Socrates, whose teaching he 
recorded in a Symposium and Anecdotes {Memora- 
bilia). POLYBIUS (B.C. 203-121) is the historian of 
the Graeco-Roman period. To him chiefly we owe 
our knowledge of the Achaean and ^tolian Leagues, 
and of the Macedonian wars which brought Greece 


under Roman sway. Happily the plan of his history 
was so wide that it embraced much else : and to him 
we owe our knowledge of the first Punic War, and a 
great deal relating to the kingdoms of Syria and 
Egypt established after the death of Alexander. 

Those are the four great historians of Greece. 
There were many others, but their works have been 
lost. The later writers of history in Greek — 
Diodorus of Sicily, Dionysius of Halicarnassus, and 
Appian (in the last century B.C.) are on a lower level 
as artists, and the two last were historians rather 
of Rome than Greece. To Diodorus, however, who 
was dull but honest, we owe a good deal of what is 
known of the history of Sicily. 

The last department of Greek classical literature 
to be noticed is Oratory. Democratic institutions, I 
have already said, imply the existence and influence 
of oratory. Pericles and the demagogues who suc- 
ceeded him were what they were because they knew 
how to persuade the people. Popular law courts 
involve the same necessity. In Athens, for instance, 
the jury consisted of some five hundred men. To 
address them successfully implied something of the 
same qualities as those possessed by a popular leader. 
Everywhere in Greece, therefore, we find professional 
teachers of the art of speech. No subject was more 
often professed by the Sophists, but of scientific 
treatises on its principles — represented by the general 
term Rhetoric (prjropiicrj r^v??), we have of the 
classical age only that of Aristotle. Of the actual 
products of the art — speeches — we have somewhat 
more. A class of professional speech-writers arose 


in answer to the needs of the time, and there must 
once have been a great many of such compositions 
existing. We possess, however, only specimens from 
the ten Attic Orators: Antiphon (B.C. 480-411) 
Andocides (B.C. 435-387) ; Lysias (c. B.C. 450-373) 
Isaeus (c. B.C. 420-348) ; Isocrates (B.C. 436-338) 
Lycurgus (B.C. 396-323) ; Aeschines (B.C. 387-314) 
Demosthenes (B.C. 384-322); Hypereides (B.C. 396- 
322); Deinarchus (B.C. 361-285). 

Of these Lysias was mainly a speech-writer for 
others, though some of the orations were delivered 
in his own name and in his own interests ; Isocrates 
wrote for the most part pamphlets in the form of 
speeches ; Isaeus in his extant speeches confines 
himself to cases of disputed claims under wills. 
From the others we have one or more speeches on 
special subjects, as that of Andocides on the violation 
of the mysteries, but most of them are in favour of or 
against the anti-Macedonian policy of Demosthenes. 
Of the three surviving speeches of Aeschines one 
is on the embassy to Philip on which he and 
Demosthenes served, and one is in prosecution of the 
man who proposed to " crown " Demosthenes. The 
answer of Demosthenes to both is extant. As litera- 
ture far the most important in number and splendour 
of style are the orations of Demosthenes. Though a 
considerable number of them are purely forensic — 
spoken by himself or his clients in private lawsuits, 
the most notable are those which relate to public 
questions, and they are for the most part connected 
with his policy of opposition to the designs of Philip, 
king of Macedonia — the Olynthiacs, the Philippics, 



on the Chersonese, on the " fraudulent embassy," " on 
the Crown," and others. The political purpose of 
these speeches has already been noted. As literature 
they mark the highest point in the development of a 
Greek prose style. Clear, incisive, and harmonious, 
the language at once pleases the ear and flashes the 
meaning upon the mind. The art is so great that it 
is entirely concealed ; and for the moment each word 
or phrase seems inevitable, He carried conviction 
as though by an irresistible torrent. It was only 
when the commanding voice, and the long roll of the 
sentences were silent, that an audience could begin 
to see that it had been carried off its feet, and swept 
far in a direction to which, in its soberer reflections, 
it had no intention of going. 

Though with the loss of freedom the constant need 
for oratory was much diminished, it continued to be 
cultivated in Greece as an art. Rhetoric schools 
existed in other parts of Hellas as well as at Athens, 
as, for instance, at Rhodes and in various Greek 
cities of Asia. The Attic style, however, retained its 
reputation for purity and moderation, while that of 
Asia was ornate and turgid. The Rhodian style was 
regarded as intermediate, and in the age of Cicero 
the school at Rhodes was very largely frequented by 
young Roman nobles who wished to perfect them- 
selves in the art of Rhetoric, as the foundation for 
the practical use of oratory, so much needed by 
public men at Rome. 

Within the last twenty years certain parts of the 
writings of Greek authors long lost have been 
recovered on papyri found in Egypt. The most 


important are (1) a treatise on the Constitution of 
Athens, attributed to Aristotle. (2) Five speeches of 
Hypereides. (3) About twenty odes of Bacchylides 
more or less complete. (4) Part of the Antiope of 
Euripides. (5) Part of the triumphal Ode of 
Timotheus. (6) Certain Mimes of Herondas. (7) 
Part of a play of Menander — the Labourer. Some 
Epicurean treatises have also been deciphered on the 
charred rolls discovered at Herculaneum. 


Abydos, siege of, 289, 298 
Academics, the, 76, 314 
Acarnania, 12, 169, 172, 211, 300, 


Achaia, 38, 51, 56 ; varied mean- 
ing of the name, 340-1 ; joins 
Athens for a time, 142 ; re- 
volts from Sparta, 218 ; made 
a Roman province, 307, 340 ; 
Achaean League, 274~6 V 277, 
283-4, 290, 293-4, 300-1, 304-5 

Achaioi, 11 ; of Phthiotis, 293 

Acrocorinthus, 277, 291-2, 294 

Acropolis of Athens, 62 ; build- 
ings on, 146-9 

Actium, battle of, 339 

ALgean, islands of the, 76-79 ; 
under-king of Egypt, 285-6 

.Egina, mint at, 50, 57 ; gives 
earth and water to king of 
Persia, 99-100 ; war of with 
Athens, 107 ; forced to join 
Confederacy of Delos,i57,i62 ; 
purchased by Attalus, 283, 
286, 290 ; desolation of, 328 ; 
given to Athens by Antony, 
338, but taken away by 
Augustus, 342 

^Egospotami, battle of, 164, 195 

^Eolians, 38, 81 

^Eschines, orator, 218, 401 

^Eschylus, 29, 119, 154, 264, 

iEtolia, 171-2 ; ^Etolian League, 

273-4, 276, 278, 283, 291, 293 ; 

discontent of, 294, 296, 300 ; 

desolation of, 307 ; submits to 

Caesar, 335 
Agathocles, 260 

Agesilaus, king of Sparta, 207-8 
Agis III., king of Sparta, 237 
Agrigentum, 256, 259, 261 
Agrippa, 342 
Alcaeus, 23, 367-8 
Alcibiades, 177, 181-2, 186-7, 

192-4, 213 
Alcman, 368 
Alcmaeonidae, 67 
Aleuadae, 11 1 
Alexander the Great, 226-238 ; 

successors of, 235-6 
Alexander IV., son of Alexander 

the Great, 265 
Alexander the Philhellene, 215 
Alexander, king of the Molossi, 

Alexandria, foundation of, 233 ; 

under the Ptolemies, 271 ; 

Caesar at, 336 ; literature of, 23. 

29, 248 ; Library at, 300, 339 
Alexandria Troas, 296, 340 
Amasis, king of Egypt, 84 
Ambracia, 169, 172, 300, 309 
Araraon, oracle of, 233 
Amphiaraus, oracle of, 329 
Amphictyonic League, 4, 6, 216, 

218, 221, 273-4, 308, 340 
Amphilochia, 335 




Amphipolis, 145, 175-6,200, 216, 

Amphissa, 221 

Amyntas, 215 

Anacreon, 368 

Anaxagoras, 153, 358 

Andocides. orator, 40 

Andros, 338 

Antalcidas, peace of, 206, 209 

Anthologies, Greek, 372 

Antigdnus, one of the generals 
of Alexander, 240, 269 

Antigonus Doson, king of Mace- 
donia, 277, 282 

Antigonus Gonatas, king of 
Macedonia, 271, 282 

Antioch, 340 

Antiochus, Athenian com- 
mander defeated at Notium, 

Antiochus III. (the Great), king 

of Syria, 278, 285, 289 ; in 

Greece, 294-5 
Antipater, regent of Macedonia, 

237, 240, 270 
Antiphilus, 238 
Antiphon, orator, 192, 401 
Antonius, C., in Crete, 332 
Antonius, M., 338-340 
Anytus, prosecutor of Socrates, 

Aous R., 290 
apella, 52 

Apellicon, library of, 329 
Aphrodite of Melos (Venus of 

Milo), 153 
Apollodorus, Comic poet, 264 
Apollonia, 309, 335 
Apollonius of Rhodes, 24, 397 
Appian, historian, 400 
Aratus, restorer of Achaean 

League, 276-7 ; defeated at 

Caphyre, 278 ; poisoned, 283 
Arbela, battle of, 233 
Arcadia, 38, 51, 56, 213 
Archelaus, general of Mithra- 

dates, 327, 329 
Archidamus III., king ot Sparta, 

in Italy, 237, 255 
Archilochus, 23, 272 3 
Archons at Athens. 01 

Areopagus, 62, [39 
Argeioi, 1 1 

Arginusae, battle of. 105 

Argo, the, 4 

Argolis, 2, 28 

ArgOS, 40; friendly to the 
Persians, 00 ; allied to Athens, 
140 ; renounces the alliance, 
144 ; makes new league 
against Sparta, 170 7, 213, 
218 ; separated by Romans 
from Achaean League, 306 

Argos, Pelasgic, 11 

Arion, 368 

Aristagoras of Miletus, 92, 94-5, 

Aristides at Salamis, 118; or- 
ganises the confederacy of 
Delos, 129-130, 135 

Aristion, 326, 328 

Aristogeiton, 71 

Aristonicus of Pergamus, 38 

Aristophanes, 30, 164, 192, 199, 
200, 390-3 

Aristotle, 357-8, 403 ; his Poli- 
■ tics, 21 ; his philosophy, 25- 
6 ; his successor, 244 ; his 
books acquired by Sulla, 329 

Arsaces, king of the Parthian-, 

A it in Greece, 33-4 

Artabazos at Plataea, 123 

Artaphernes, 91, 93, 95, 97 

Artemisia, Queen, 121 

Artemisium, battles near, 112- 


Asia, Greeks in, 79, 80 ; settled 
by Roman commission, 299 ; 
oratory 111,309, 310; Roman 
province of, 318 ; massacre of 
Italians in, 325 ; Greek cities 
in revolt from Mithradates, 
330; Sulla's severity to, 331 ; 
Greek cities in visited by 
Caesar, 336 

Asopus, R., 12 1-2 

Aspasia, 157-8 

Assyria, 83, S5-6 

Astyage-, 83 ' 

Athena promachos, 146 ; Athena 
Nike, 149 



Athens, early history of, 57-65 ; 
reforms in byDraco and Solon, 
65-68, by Cleisthenes, 72-6 ; 
tyranny in, 68-72 ; becomes a 
naval power, 107 ; its hostility 
to Persia, 91 ; promises help 
to Aristagoras, 95 ; taken by 
Xerxes, 117 ; position of in 
Confederacy of Delos, 3, 129, 
134-6, 145 ; fortifications of, 

135 ; offended by Spartans, 

136 ; long walls at, 141 ; 
adornment of, 146 ; unpopu- 
larity of, 157-8 ; makes 
alliance with Corcyra, 160-1 ; 
plague at, 309, 362 ; occupied 
by Lysander, 197 ; renewed 
confederacy of, 211 ; Mace- 
donians in, 239 ; restored 
freedom of, 281-2 ; hostility 
of to Philip V., 286 ; becomes 
" friend " of Rome, 289 ; a 
Roman province, 307 ; joins 
Mithradates, 326 ; besieged 
by Sulla, 328 ; benefited by 
Pompey, 334-5 ; excludes 
Caesar's officers, 335 ; favours 
Antony, 337-8 ; altar to 
Augustus at, 341 ; Literature 
at, 23 ; philosophy at, 25-6, 309, 
362 ; once the centre of 
intellectual life, 132-3, 153 

Athos, Mount, 99 ; canal of, in 
Atossa, daughter of Cyrus, 87 
Attalus I., king of Pergamus, 

281-3, 286 
Attalus II., brother of Eumenes, 

Attalus III., leaves his royal 

rights to Rome, 317-18 
Attica, nature of, 68 ; invasions 

of, 169, 289 
Augustus (Octavian), 338, 339 ; 

his restorations in Greece, 

340, 341, 343 

Babrius, fabulist, 23, 372 
Babvlon, 83, 87 ; Alexander at, 

Bacchiadae of Corinth, 49 

Bacchylides, 23, 264, 368, 403 

Bactriana, 234 

Balearic Islands, pirates of, 316 

basileus and basileia, 21 

Berytum, 340 

Bion, 267, 397 

Bithynia, kingdom of, 236, 272, 
330 ; Roman province of, 342 

Black Sea, trade with, 41 ; see 

Boeotia, federation of, 57 ; sub- 
mits to Persia, 99 ; Thebes 
claims supremacy in, 212 ; de- 
cline of, 247-8 ; disturbances 
in, 294, 302-3 ; federation of 
dissolved by Romans, 305 ; sub- 
ject to Rome, and its territory 
made ager fublicus, 307-8 ; 
occupied by Mithradates, 329 

Bosporus, the, 281 

boule of Athens, the, 72 

Brasidas, Spartan general, 170, 

Bruttius Sura, 327 

Brutus, M., 323, 337 

Byzantium submits to Persia, 
99 ; reoccupied by Persians 
after revolt, 97 ; besieged by 
Greek fleet, 130, 145 ; again oc- 
cupied by Persians, 193 ; joins 
Athenian confederacy, 211 ; 
Epaminondas at, 214 ; revolts 
from Athens, 217 ; attacked 
by Philip, 221 ; sea power of, 
236, 272 ; at war with Rhodes, 
281 ; joins Rhodes and Chios 
to secure peace, 283 ; Pontic 
occupation of, 330 

Caecilius Metellus, Q., 332 
Caesar, C. Julius, colonises Cor- 
inth, 307, 309 ; his officers 
occupy Greece, 336 ; visits 
Greek cities in Asia, 337 
Calchedon, 91, 193 
Callias, peace of, 142, 298 
Callicrates, 301 
Callidromus, Mt., 114, 248 



Callimachus, polemarch, 102 

Callimachus, poet, 24, 372 

Callinus, 369-70 

Cam byses, king of Persia, 57 

Caphyae, 2js 

Cappadocia invaded by Croesus, 
85 ; kingdom of, 236 

Caria, 81, 96, 304 

Carneades, 314 

Carthaginians, 132, 256, 259- 
62, 296 

Cassander, 240, 243, 247, 269-70 

Catana, 186 

Caunes, 325 

Celts, see Gauls 

Censorinus, L., governor of 
Greece and Macedonia, 338 

Ceos joins ^Etolian League, 274 

Cephallenia, 141, 169, 211 

Chabrias, Athenian general, 212, 

Chaeroneia victory of Philip at, 
222 ; of Sulla, 329-30 

Chalcidic peninsula, 161, 175-6, 
178, 215 

Chalcis in Eubcea, 57, 290, 292, 
204, 296, 309 

Chersonese, Thracian, 41, 65, 
90 ; occupied by Persians, 97, 
194, 207 ; annexed by king 
of Egypt, 271, 341 ; occupied 
by PhilipV., 285, by Antiochus, 
295 ; given to Eumenes of 
Pergamus, 299, 302 

Chios joins Samos and Lesbos 
to resist Persia, 126 ; breaks 
off from Athens, 191 ; joins 
new Athenian confederacy, 
211 ; breaks off again, 216 ; as 
a sea power, 236, 272, 283, 
299, 330-1 

Chremodean war, 282 

Cicero, 309, 321-3 

Cilicia, 82 ; pirates of, 316 ; Ro- 
man government of, 323, 332, 

Cimmerians in Asia, MS 

Cimon, son of Miltiades, 131 ; 
ostracised, 136 ; recalled and 
sent to Cyprus, 142 

Cirrbaean plain, the, 221 

Cius, 286 

Cla/.omenre, 299, 33 1 

Cleanthes, Stoic, 363 

Cleisthenes, reforms of, 72-5 

Cleobis and Biton, 83 

Cleombrotus, king of Sparta, 212 

Cleomenes I., king of Sparta, 04. 
99 ; Cleomenes III., 277-8 

Cleon, Athenian demagogue, 
171-2, 175-6 

Cleopatra, 338 40 

Cleruehs in Eubcea, 144, 157 ; in 
Potidaea, 217 ; in Samos, 239 ; 
in Delos, 315 ; forbidden, 211 

Cnidus, battle of, 208 ; rescript 
of Augustus to, 343 

Cnossos, palace of, 8 

Codrus, king of Athens, 61 

Ccele-Syria, 295, 339 

Coes of Mitylene, 89 

Colonics, Greek, 42 ; Roman in 
Greece, 337, 340 

Comedy^Oj 390; New Comedy, 
243, 393-4 

Conon, 194-5 ! restores the 
walls of Athens, 208 

Corcyra, 107, 158, 171, 212, 300 

Corinna, 36S 

Corinth, Bacchiadae of, 49; in- 
dependent of Sparta, 51 ; its 
power at sea, 107 ; congress 
at, in, 124 ; its league with 
Epidauros and /Egina, 140 ; 
its fleet defeated by Corcy- 
reans, 158 ; helps Potidaea 
against Athens, 161 ; refuses 
peace of Nicias and joins 
Argos, 176 ; joins Athens and 
Thebes, 208 ; separated from 
Achaean League by Romans, 
306 ; destroyed by Mummius, 
306-7, 309, 328 ; colonised by 
Caesar, 337 

Corn trade with the North t 41 

Coroneia, defeat of Athenians at, 
143 ; victory of Agesilaus at, 

Cremisus, R., battle at the, 260 

Crete, discoveries in, S, 22, }} ; 
decay of, 76-7 ; Cretans re- 
fuse aid against Xerxes, in ; 



occupied by Spartans, 237 ; 

pirates of, 316, 332-3 ; partly 

liberated by Augustus, 340 
Critias, 197-8 
Critolaus, general of Achaean 

League, 306 
Critolaus, peripatetic philoso- 
pher, 314 
Croesus, king of Lydia, 81-3, 85 
Croton, 3, 252 
Cyclades, the, 76 ; belonging to 

Egvpt and attacked by Philip 

V., 286, 341 
Cyclic Pods, the, 22, 364 
Cyclopean walls, 11 
Cylon, 67 
Cyme, 12, 299 
Cynoscephale, battle of, 291 
Cynossema, battle of, 193 
Cyprus, conquered by Persians, 

87 ; Conon in, 196 ; under 

Antony, 339 
Cypselus, 49 
Cyrene, 285 
Cyrus, founder of Medo-Persian 

Empire, 83-6 
Cyrus, son of Darius II., 194, 

Cythera, 175, 341 
Cyzicus, 193, 332, 342 

Damascus, 233 

Darius I., king of Persia, 87 ; 
invades Scythia, 88-90 ; re- 
solves to punish Eretria and 
Athens, 98 ; and to invade 
Greece after Marathon, 107 ; 
his death, 108 

Darius II. (Nothos), 194 

Darius III. (Codomannus) de- 
feated by Alexander, 231-4 

Datis at Marathon, 100-1 

Decelea occupied by Spartans, 
190-1, 196 

Deinarchus, orator, 401 

Delium, battle of, 175, 200 
treaty of, 330 

Delos, confederacy of, 3, 129, 
197 ; Ionian assembly at, 76 ; 

Persian fleet at, 100 ; Greek 
fleet at, 124 ; treasury removed 
from, 145 ; made a free port, 
305, 326 ; commissionerof,3i5 ; 
devastated by Mithradates's 
general, 327 ; Pompey's bene- 
factions to, 334 ; statue of Julia 
in, 342 

Delphi. 42, 57, in ; Persians at, 
116 ; amphictyonic meetings 
at, 46 ; favours Sparta, 84 ; 
gold tripod dedicated at, 124 ; 
the care of the temple at, 142-3 ; 
sacred territory of, 216-17 5 
Gauls at, 248 ; ^Etolians in, 
273 ; Sulla borrows from, 329 ; 
adhers to Caesar, 335 ; benefac- 
tions of Antony to, 338 

Demaratus, king of Sparta, 
deposed, 99, 100 ; at Ther- 
mopylae, 113 

Demeter, temples of, 122, 126 

Demetrias, 290, 292, 294, 296 

Demetrius, of Phalerum, 243 

Demetrius, the Besieger, son of 
Antigonus, 269, 270-1 

Demetrius II., king of Mace- 
donia, 282 

Demetrius, son of Philip V., in 
Rome, 302 

Democracy, 21 

Democritus, 358 

Demosthenes, Athenian gene- 
ral, invades ^Etolia, 171-2 ; 
occupies Pylos, 172 ; at 
Syracuse, 188-90 

Demosthenes, the orator, 25, 
167, 218, 221, 238-9, 401-2 

Dercyllidas, Spartan admiral, 193 

Diaeus, general of Achaean 
League, 306 

Dio Chrysostom, 25 

Diodorus Siculus, 24, 400 

Diogenes, a Stoic, 314 

Diogenes, a Macedonian officer 
at Athens, 282 

Dionysius I., tyrant of Syracuse, 
252, 259, 264 ; his son Diony- 
sius II., 260 

Dionysius Halicarnassus, 23, 400 

Dionysius, theatre of, 149 



Dodona, oracle of, 15 

dokimasia, 73 

Dorian dialect, 26 ; Dorians in 
Peloponnesus, 38 ; Dorian 
Hexapolis in Asia, 85 

Dorilaus, general of Mithradates, 
329 30 

Draco, O5-6 

Drama, the, 26-7, 371 

Dyme, 314, 333 

Dyrrachium, 309, 340 

Earth and water, demand of, 


Ecbatana, 83 

Echinadae, battles off the, 239 

Education in Greece, 348 ff 

Egesta, 178, 185 

Egypt, mention of in Homer, 15 ; 
Greek colonists in, 41 ; taken 
by Persians, 86-7 ; revolts 
in, 108, 141 ; Alexander in, 
232-3 ; kingdom of after 
Alexander, 235-6; friendship 
of with Rome, 284, 289 ; 
furnishes ships to Lucullus, 
329 ; made a province by 
Augustus, 341 

Eira, Mt, 55 

Elateia, 221, 290 

Elea, philosophers at, 132 

Elegiac -poetry, 23, 371 

Elcusinian mysteries, profana- 
tion of, 181 ; Augustus initiated 
in, 340 ; significance of, 366 

Elis, 38, 5r, 56, 273 

Empedocles, 132, 264 

Epaminondas, 213-14, 216 

Ephesus, 81, 95 ; taken by 
Alexander, 231 ; joined to 
Pergamus, 299 ; temple of 
Attemis at, 325; inscriptions 
at, 330, 337 ; Augustus bene- 
factor of, 340. 342 

Ephialtesof Malis, traitor, 114 

Ephialtes, Athenian statesman, 

Ephors at Sparta, the, 52 
Epicharmus, 264 

Epicurus, 26, 34, 244, 358, 3'»i 

Epicurean writings at Ikr- 
culaneum, 403 

Epidamnua (Dyrrachium), revo- 
lution at, [58 

Epidaurus, temple at, 329 ; 
joins Corinth and Mgina 
against Athens, 140 

Epinikia, 23 

Epipolae, 187-8 

Epirus, 12, 41 ; punishment of 
by Romans, 305; joined to 
province of Macedonia, 307 ; 
desolation of, 309 

Erechtheus, 58, 149 

Eretria in Eubcea, 25 ; captured 
by Persians, 101-2 ; separation 
from Athens by Augustus, 342 

Etruscans, 132 ; pirates, 259 

Eubcea, 143, 191, 216, 218 ; 
declared free by Romans, 293 ; 
submits to Mithradates, 327 

Euclides, archonship of, 199 

Eumenes, king of Pergamus, 
293, 299, 300, 303-4 ; falls out 
of favour at Rome, 304 

Eumolpidae, priests of De meter, 

Euripides, 29, 154, 164, 386-90, 
403 ; on athletes, 45 

Eurybiades, Spartan com- 
mander, 112 

Eurycles, prince of Sparta, 341 

Eurymedon R., battles of the, 13 1 

Eurymedon, Athenian general, 

Evagoras, king of Cyprus, 196 

Festivals, Greek, 45 
Fimbria, 330 
Flaccus, 330 

Flamininus, T. Quintus, 290-4 
Four Hundred, revolution 
the, 192-3 


Gaugamela, 233 
Gauls (Celts) invade 
248, 25:, 273 




Gaza taken by Alexander, 232 
Gelo, king of Syracuse, in ; 
defeats Carthaginians, 132, 256 
Gorgias, a Sophist, 200, 264, 352 
Granicus R., battle of the, 228 
Greeks, their work in the world, 
4 ; melancholy of, 13, 374 ; 
forms of government among, 
21 ; decadence of under 
Romans, 308 ; settlement of 
by Sulla, 329 ; by Caesar, 
and with Macedonia under 
M. Brutus, 337, and Antony, 
338 ; they favour Antony 
against Octavian, 339 
Gyges, king of Lydia, 81 
Gylippus, Spartan general, 

187-8, 190 
Gytheium, port of Sparta, 141, 
293, 342 


Hadrian, emperor, 149 

Haliartus, fighting at, 208 

Halicarnassus, taken by Alex- 
ander, 231 ; under Rome, 322 

Halys R.,82, 84 

Hannibal, 284, 295 ; defeated by 
Rhodians, 298 

Harmodius, 91 

Harmosts, Spartan governors, 

Harpagus, a general of Cyrus, 89 

Hegelochus, Macedonian ad- 
miral, 231 

Hellas, meaning of, 2 ; Hellenes, 
descent of, 1, 38 ; character- 
istics of, 2-4 

Helots, 53 ; rebellion of, 136, 141 

Heracles, 16. Heracleia, 297 

Hercte, Mt, 261 

Herman, 150 ; mutilation of, 182 

Hermocrates, Syracusan general, 
187, 189 

Herodotus, 24, 133, 153-4, 39§ 

Heroes, worship of, 16 

Herondas, 394, 403 

Hesiod, 22, 366 

Hiero I., king of Syracuse, 
defeats Etruscans, 132, and 

Carthaginians, 259 ; enter- 
tains poets and philosophers, 

Hiero II., 262 

Hippias, Sophist, 352 

Hippias and Hipparchus, sons 
of Pisistratus, 71-2, 91, 101 

Hippocrates, 24 

Hipponax, 372 

Histiaeus of Miletus, 90, 92,94, 96 

Homeric poems, 11, 12 ; doc- 
trines in, 17 ; use of in educa- 
tion, 364-66 

Hypata, in Thessaly, 342 

Hypereides, orator, 401 


Iasos, 331 

Ibycus, 368 

Ilium, 331 

Illyrian pirates, 259, 316 

Inaros of Libya, 141 

India, Alexander in, 234-5 

Indus R., 234 

Ionian cities, 81 ; revolt from 
Persia, 94-7 ; Ionian alphabet, 
22 ; Ionian Sea, 41 

Iphicrates, Athenian com- 
mander, destroys a Spartan 
mora, 209 ; 212 ; 217 

Ipsus (Phrygia), battle of, 270 

Isaeus, 401 

Isis, 233 

Isocrates, orator, 401 

Issus, battle of, 232 

Isthmian games, 45 ; proclama- 
tion at, 292 ; kept up by 
Sicyon, 308 

Isthmus of Corinth, wall across 
the, 116 ; closed against 
Caesar's officers, 335 ; pro- 
jected canal across, 337 

Italy, Greek Colonies in, 41, 185, 

Ithome, Mt., 55, 136, 141 

Ixion, 18 


Josephus, historian, 25 
Julian, Emperor, 25 


4 II 


Kadmeia, citadel of Thebes, 210 

Laconia, Dorians in, 2, 38 
Lamachus. 1S1, 1N5, 187 
Lamia, 238-9, 296 
Lampsacus, [95, 296 
Laodicea, 33s 
Larisa (Asia), 12 ; (Thessalv) 

"I. 335 

Laurium, silver mines at, 65, 315 

Lechaeum, port of Corinth, 208 

Leleges, the, 11 

Lemnos, 91 

Leonidas, king of Sparta, 1 12-16 

Leonnatus, 238 

Leontini, 264 

Leosthenes, 238 

Leucadia, 294 

Leotyehides, king of Sparta, 100 ; 
at Mykale, 125 

Lesbos, ports of, 23 ; joins with 
Samos and Chios to resist Per- 
sians, 126 ; revolt of, 170, 191 

Leucippus, 358 

Leuctra, battle of, 212-13 

Lilybaeum, 262 

Livia in Sparta, 342 

Locri Epizyphe.-ii, 252 

Lucian, 25 

Lucretius, 358 

Lucullus, 329, 330, 332 

Lvcaonia, 299 

Lycia, 82, 331, 338 

Lycon, prosecutor of Socrates, 

Lycortas, 300 

Lvcurgus, Spartan law-giver, 


Lycurgus, tyrant of Sparta, 278 

Lycurgus, Attic orator, 401 

Lydia, 81, 299 

Lygdamis, 93 

Lyric poetry, 23, 367 

Lysander, Spartan general, 

194-6, 198, 208 
Lysias, orator, 401 
Lysicrates, choragic monument 

of, 150 

Lysimacheia, 286 
Lysimachus, king of Thrace, 

236, 269-71, 285 
Lysippus ot" Sicyon, sculptor, 33 


.Macedonia, 3, 12, 91 ; rise of, 
215 ; supremacy of, 2l6 
position of alter Alexander, 
235 ; influence in Greece, 
278 ; wars with Home, first 
282-3, second 282-91 ; divided 
into four districts, 303 ; made a 
Roman province, 307 ; Pontic 
troops in, 330 ; governed by 
M. Brutus, 337 

Magna Gnecia, 3, 26, 251 

Magnesia ad Sipylum, battle of, 
298, 331 

Magnesia (in Greece). 112 

Mamertini, the, 261 

Mantinea, 176-7, 210, 213-14 

Marathon, battle of, 101-6 

Mardonius reorganises Asiatic 
Greece, 98, 99 ; left in Greece 
by Xerxes, 121 ; killed at 
Plataea, 121, 123 

Masanassa, 296 

Medontidae, 61 

Megabazus, 90-1 

Megalopolis, 213, 237, 306 

Megara, colonies of, 42 ; revolts 
from Athens, 143-4 ; its ports 
(Nisaea and Pagae), 144 ; 
Megarians excluded from 
Attic harbours and markets 
158, 162 ; desolation of under 
the Romans, 336, 338 

Meletus, prosecutor of Socrates, 

Melos, revolt of, 163, 177-8 

Memphis, 233 

Menander,poet of New Comedy, 
30, 246, 393-4, 403 

Messene (in Sicily), 261 

Messenia, Dorians in, 38 ; subject 
to Sparta, 51 ; helots in, 51 ; 
Messenian wars, 55 ; Mes- 
senians' revolt f rom Sparta,2 j 8 

Methone, 27 



Metellus Scipio, 335 

Mikon, a painter, 150 

Miletus, colonies of, 12; position 
of among the Asiatic Greek 
cities, 42, 81, 299 ; fall of, 96 

Miltiades, 89, 90, 101 

Minos, king of Crete, 8 

Minotaur, the, 8 

Minyae, the, 11 

Misenum, the peace of, 339 

Mithradates IV., king of Pontus, 

Mithradates VI. (Eupator), 324- 

33 2 

Mitylene, decree about, 170-1, 
195 ; joins new Athenian 
federation, 211 ; holds out 
for Mithradates, 331 ; restored 
by Pompey, 333-4 

Moschus, pastoral poet, 24, 267, 

Mucius Scaevola, Q\, 320 
Mummius, L., 306 
Munychia, Macedonian garrison 

in, 239, 243 
Musseus, 23 

Mycenaean age, 8, 11, 15, 16 
Mykale, battle of, 125, 126 
Myson, sculptor, 33 
Myrtis, 368 
Mythymnia, 211 


Nabis, tyrant of Sparta, 290, 

2 93-5 

Naples, 255 

Naupactus, helots placed in, 
141 ; given to the -^Etolians 
by Philip, 274, 297 

Naxos, revolution in, 92, 93 ; 
revolts from Confederacy 
of Delos, 131 ; assigned to 
Rhodes by Antony, 338 

Nemean games, 45 ; proclama- 
tion at, 294 

Nicholas of Damascus, 25 

Nicias at Pylos, 175 ; peace of, 
176 ; opposes Sicilian expedi- 
tion, 178 ; appointed general 
of it, 181, 185, 188-90 

Nicomedes, king of Bithynia, 331 
Nicopolis, near Actium, 340, 341 
Nisaea, port of Megara, 144, 175 
Nonnus, 24 
Notium, battle of, 194 


Octavian, see Augustus 

Oenophyta, Boeotians defeated 
at, 141 

Oligarchy, 21 

Olympia, festival at, 45, 215, 252, 
301, 326 ; works of Pheidias 
at, 146 ; statue of Augustus at, 


Olympias, mother of Alexander 
the Great, 227 

Olynthus, 210 ; destroyed by 
Philip, 218 

Onomarchus, Phocian general, 

Oppian, poet, 24 

Oracles, 42 ; consulted by 
Crcesus, 84 

Orators, Attic, 400-2 

Orchomenus (in Arcadia), 306 

Orchomenus (in Bceotia), vic- 
tory of Sulla at, 330 

Oroetes, 87 

Oropus, 191, 314, 324 

Orphic Poetry, 366-7 

Orthogoras, 49 

Ostracism, 75 

Pactyas, general of Cyrus, 85 

Paestum, 256 

Palestine, 232, 270, 278, 285 

Pangaeus, Mt., 217 

Panium, 285 

Panormus, 261 

Parmenides, 137 

Parmenion, Macedonian general, 

Parthians, the, 272 
Patrae, 309, 336, 340-1 
Paul, St., at Ephesus and 

Philippi, 342 
Pausanias, Spartan regent and 

general, 122 ; dedicates tripod 



at Delphi, 124 ; recalled from 
Byzantium, 129, 130 ; convic- 
tion and death of, [3] 

Pausanias, king of Sparta, 196, 

Pausanias, the traveller, 309 

Pelasgians, the, II, 16 

Pella, 215 

Pelopidas, 214, 216 

Peloponnesian war, causes of, 
157-61 ; declaration of, 1C2 ; 
general course of, 163-4 > 
history of, 169, 199 

Peloponnesus assigned to Sext. 
Pompeius, 339 

Pelusium, 232 

Pericles, rise of, 136-7 ; reforms 
of, 139-40 ; foreign policy of, 
140-3 ; advancement of Athens 
by, 146 ; policy of in Pelopon- 
nesian war, 169-70 

Perdiccas, king of Macedonia, 

Perdiccas, officer of Alexander 
and Chiliarch, 235 

Pergamus, kingdom of, 236, 
248, 272, 299; fleet of, 316; 
bequeathed to Rome, 317 ; 
temple of Asclepius at, 325 ; 
Library at, 300 

pericekoi in Laconia, 53 

Perses, king of Macedonia, 

Persians, 83-95 J Persian inva- 
sions of Greece, 98-123 ; de- 
feated at Mykale, 125-6 ; 
recover control of Greek 
States in Asia, 209 ; con- 
quered by Alexander, 228-34 

Phalerum, harbour of Athens, 65 

Pharnabazus, 190, [93 

Pharnaces, king of Pontus, 281 

Pharsalia, battle of, 336 

Pharsalus, 294 

Pharus, 233 

Pheidias, 33, 146-7 ; condemna- 
tion and death of, 157 

Pherae, 217 

Philemon, 243 

Philip II., king of Macedonia, 
215-29, 226-7 

Philip Arrhidaeus, successor ol 
Alexander, 235. 

Philip v., king ol Macedonia, 
277. 282 6, 291, 2<)^ 6, 302. 340 

Philippi, 217 ; battle of, 338 ; 
Roman colony at, 340 

I'hilistus, 264 

Philoclcs, Athenian commander 
.it ASgospotami, [96 

Philocrates, peace of, 218 

Philopcemon, 296, 300-1 

Phlius, 210, 213 

Phocaea, battle off, 293 

Phocion, Athenian statesman, 
240, 243 

Phocis, 57 ; Phocian wall at 
Thermopylae, 113 ; Phocians 
claim share in management 
of Delphi, 143 ; sacred war 
against, 216-17 ; declared free 
by Romans, 293 

Phocylides, 372 

PlKebidas, 210 

Phcenice, peace of, 278 

Phoenicians, 15 ; alphabet of, 
22 ; subjected to Persia, 87 

Phormio, Athenian admiral, 169 

fihoros, , increase of, 145, 211 

Phrygia, 299 

Phrvnichus, orator, 192 

Phyle, 198 

Pindar, 23, 133, 264, 368-9 

piracy, 8, 129/259, 315-61 33l~3 

Piraeus, 65, 135, 193, 197 ; de- 
serted state of, 315 ; occupied 
for Mithradates, 327 ; dis- 
mantled by Sulla, 328 ; occu- 
pied for Caesar, 335 

Pisa in Elis, 56 

Pisistratus, 68-71, 93 

Piso, 323 

Plata^a refuses earth and water, 
99 ; sends 1,000 men to Mara- 
thon, 105 ; loyalty of, m ; 
battle of, 1 2 1-3 ; siege of, 169 

Plato, 356-7 ; Laws and Republic 
of, 21; philosophy of, 25-6; 
successors of, 244 

Pleistoanax, king of Sparta, 
invades Attica, J 43-4 

Plutarch, 25 



Polus, a Sophist, 200, 352 
Polybius, historian, 24, 244, 301, 

304, 307, 369, 399 

Polycleitos, 33 

Polycrates of Samos, 86-7 

Polygnotus, painter, 150 

Polyperchon, 240 

Pompeiastce, 334 

Pompey(Gn. Pompeius Magnus) 
puts down the pirates, 333 ; 
his settlement of Asiatic 
Greece, 333-5 ; his benefac- 
tions to Athens, Rhodes, Delos, 
334 ; Sext. Pompeius, 339 

Pontus, kingdom of, 236, 272, 

Potidaea, 161 ; siege of, 169, 
200 ; seized by Philip II., 217 

Praxilla, poetess, 368 

Praxiteles, sculptor, 33 

Prodicus, sophist, 353 

Propontis, the, 41 

Protagoras, 200, 350, 352-4 

Prusias, king of Bithynia, 281, 
283, 304 

Psyttaleia, 118 

Ptolemy I., king of Egypt, 269 ; 
Ptolemy II. (Philadelphia), 
29, 264, 284 ; Ptolemy III. 
(Euergetes), 277 ; Ptolemy 
IV. (Philopator), 281 ; Pto- 
lemy V. (Epiphanes), 285 

fublicani in Asia, 319, 320, 337 

Punic wars, 284 

Pydna, 216 ; battle of, 303 

Pylagoroe, 46 

Pylos, 172, 176-7 

Pyrrhus, 255, 261, 284 

Pythagoras, 132, 252 

Pythia, the, 42, 84 


Quintus of Smyrna, 24 

Rhegium, 185, 256, 259 

Rhodes joins Athenian con- 
federacy, 211 ; breaks off, 217 ; 
sea-power of, 236, 272 ; School 
of Oratory at, 309, 344 ; war 

of with Byzantium, 281 ; joins 
Byzantium and Chios in ad- 
vising peace, 283, 299, 304; 
suspected by Romans, 304; 
its fleet against pirates, 316 ; 
subject to Rome, 324-6, 331, 

334, 338 

Roman government of Greece, 
3, 236, 262, 289, 313-347; 
Roman army in Epirus, 290 ; 
Roman policy towards Mace- 
donia, 292 ; movement in 
Greece against, 304 

Roxana, wife of Alexander, 235, 

Rupilius Rufus, 320 

Sacred wars, 67, 216 

Salamis, bay of, 116 ; battle of, 

Salamis in Cyprus, 323 
Salonike, 331 
Samos, 86-7 ; Persian fleet at, 

124 ; makes league with Chios 

and Lemnos, 126 ; Athenian, 

fleet at, 191-2, 196 ; under 

Romans 322, 331 ; Augustus 

at, 339-40, 342 
Sappho, 23, 367 
Sardis, 81, 87 ; Persian army at, 

Scaptius, 323 
Sciathus, 327 
Scipio Africanus, 298 
Scopas, ^Etolian general, 285 
Scythians in Asia, 88 ; invaded 

by Darius, 89 
Seleucus, king of Babylonia and 

then of Syria, 269-72 
Seleucus. son of Antiochus the 

Great, 298 
Selinus, 178, 185 
Sellasia, battle of, 277 
Sentinum, battle at, 251 
Servilius Isauricus, P., 332 
Sestos, siege of, 126 
Sicily, 12, 171-2, 178 ; Athenian 

expedition to, 184-90, 256 ; 

Roman settlement of, 265 ; 



held by Sext. Pompeius, 339 ; 
Greek poets in, 266 

Sicyon, tyrants of, 49 ; Roman 
troops defeated near, 283 : 
Roman province of, 307 ; to 
keep up Isthmian games, 308 ; 
arbitrates between Athens and 
Oropus, 314 

Sidon, 342 

Sigeium occupied by Athenians, 
65, 71. 92 

Simonides of Ceos, 23, 132, 269, 
368, 371-2 

Simonides of Amorgus, 372-3 

Sinope, capital of Pontus, 281 

Slavery, 52 

Smyrna, 295, 299 

Social wars, of Athenian allies, 
216 ; against ;£tolia, 274, 278, 

Socrates, 164, 195, 200-5, 354"5 

Solon, 23 ; legislation of, 66-8 ; 
visit of to Croesus, 82-3 ; poetry 
of, 370-1 

Sophists, the, 199, 351-3 

Sophocles, 29, 154, 164, 382-6 

Sparta, early supremacy of, 2, 
206-12 ; constitution of, 51- 
56 ; loss of prestige of alter 
Persian wars, 135 ; earthquake 
at, 136 ; conference at to de- 
nounce Athens, 161-2 ; deal- 
ings of with Persian satraps, 
191 ; end of supremacy of, 
212 ; defeated by Antipater, 
237 ; decadence of, 277 ; 
forced to join Archaean 
League, 300-1, 305 ; separated 
from the League, 306 ; a 
Roman province, 307 ; sides 
with Pompey, 335 ; favoured 
by Augustus, 341 

Sphacteria, 172, 176 

Stesichorus, 264 

Stoa pockile, the, 150, 361 

.S7c>/V.s\ the, 26, 361-4 

Strabo, 25 

Strymon R., 108, 216 

Sulla in Greece, 327-31 

Set\ Sulpicius Rufus, 328 ; gover- 
nor of Greece by Caesar, 336 

Susa, 92 1 

Sussitia at Sparta, 54 

Sybaris, 252 

Synta vis, 211, 23 1 

Syracuse, 3, [64, [86-90, 252, 

256, 265, 309, 341 
Syria, kingdom of, 235, 330 

Tagns of Thessaly, 57 

Tanagra, battle of, 140-1 ; pot- 
tery works at, 247 

Tantalus, 18 

Tarentum, 32, 237, 247, 255-6, 309 

Tarsus, 338 

Tegeans at Plataea, 122 

Tempe, vale of, 112 

Telesilla, poetess, 368 

Temenus of Argos, 49 ; Temeni- 
dae, 215 

Tenedos, 211 

Tenos, 338 

Teuta, Queen of Illyria, 316 

Thapsus, 186 

Theatre, the, 149 

Thebes, rise of, 57 ; legends of. 
22 ; punished after Persian 
war, 124 ; supremacy of, 3, 
212-4 5 invaded by Spartans, 
210 ; allied with Athens, 211 ; 
and opposed to Philip, 221 ; 
destroyed by Alexander, 228 ; 
restored by Cassander, 247 ; 
submits to Mithradates, 327 ; 
submits to Caesar, 335 

Themistocles. 106, 107, 1 12-13 5 
atArtemisium,ii5-i6 ; activity 
of at Salamis, 117-18 ; ostra- 
cised, 131 ; services of to 
Athens, 135 

Theocritus, 24, 264, 397-8 

Theognis, 23, 371 

Theophanes, 333 

Theophrastus, 243, 329 

Theoric Fund, the, 139 

Theramenes, 192, 196-8 

Therma (Thessalonika), 11 1 

Thermopylae, meeting of Amphi- 
ctyonsat,4<) ; Persians at, 112- 
16, Philip II. at, 218; muster 

4 i6 


at after Alexander's death, 
238 ; Gauls (Celts) at, 248 ; 
Antiochus at, 297 ; Achseans 
at, 306 

Thermus takes Mitylene, 331 

Theseus kills the Minotaur, 8 ; 
combines the Attic towns, 58- 
9 ; temple of, 149 

Thespias in Bceotia, in ; Thes- 
pians stand by Leonidas, 
115 ; resist Mithradates, 327 

Thespis, 26 

Thessalonika, 335 

Thessaly, 12, 57, 99 ; declared 
free by Romans, 293 ; a Roman 
province, 307, 341 

Thimbron, Spartan general, 207 

Thirty at Athens, the, 197-9 

Thrace, kingdom of, 235-6, 270- 
1 ; Philip V. in, 302 ; troops 
of Mithradates in, 330 

Thrasybulus of Syracuse, 259 

Thrasybulus, Athenian general, 
193-4, 198 

Thrasyllus, 193 

Thrinakia, 15 

Thucydides, son of Milesias, 
opponent of Pericles, 145, 157 

Thucydides, son of Olorus, the 
historian, 24, 154, 167, 175, 

Thurii, colony at, 145, 186, 255 
Timoleon of Corinth, 260 
Timotheos, Athenian general, 

212, 217 
Tiryns, 22 

Tissaphernes, 190-2, 207 

Tithraustes, 207 

Tolmides, Athenian gene-al, 141 

Torone, 176 

Tralles, 299, 325 

Trasimene Lake, battle of, 282 

Tyrants in Peloponnese, 49-51 ; 
in Asiatic Greece, 86 ; with 
Darius on the Danube, 89 ; in 
Sicily, 262-3 ; in Sparta, 278 

Tyre, taken by Alexander, 232 ; 
punished by Augustus, 342 

Tyrtaeus, 23, 370 

Verres, 323 

Via Egnatia, 335 

Xenarchus, 264 

Xenophanesof Colophus, teacher 
in Sicily, 132, 264, 372 ; on 
athletes, 45 

Xenophon, 24, 199, 200, 207, 399 

Xerxes, king of Persia, deter- 
mines to invade Greece, 108 ; 
at Thermopylae, 114-5 ; in 
Attica, 1 16-21 

Zacynthus (Zante) allied with 

Athens, 141, 211 
Zeus, 34, 244, 361-2 ; of Dodona, 

16 ; temple of at Athens, 149 





N)i^^ : 




DF Shuckburgh, E. S. (Evelyn 

215 Shirley) 

s 57 Greece, from the coming 

of the Hellenes to A.D. 14